Crab is one of my earliest seafood recollections, of toast being spread with Shippams crab paste by my Gran for supper before bed sometime in the late seventies or early eighties. The memory of the sweet, earthy, briny flavour has never left me and I think that’s why I’m one of the seeming minority of people who prefer the stronger brown meat to the soft delicate white.
Fast forward thirty years and I’m very fortunate that most of the crabs I eat now come not in a little glass jar, but from Maggie and Alfie Edwards in Applecross in the western Scottish highlands. Cooked to perfection and beautifully dressed, I’ve never tasted anything quite as good as theirs. This recipe is inspired by my visits to those fresh highland waters and the juxtaposition that is dressed crab, with the richness and subtlety of the two meats offset by sweet chilli with a little heat, and cut through by the zesty lime. Try to get a chilli that’s more fragrant and aromatic than hot, and serve just with a tangy tartare sauce packed with roughly chopped capers.
Take a look at our informative video demonstrating how to remove meat from a crab.