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The blue crabs native to the Gulf South and Atlantic coastline shed their hard shells (or exoskeletons) many times as they grow. Before molting, the crabs form a soft new shell under the old one, which hardens within twelve hours. The crabs caught in this soft-shell state are a popular delicacy in south Louisiana. When the LaFranca family operated the restaurant, the menu often offered soft-shell crabs broiled, fried, or stuffed, and served with lemon butter sauce or Creole meuniere sauce. The classic French beurre meuniere sauce is made by browning butter to a light hazelnut color and then adding lemon juice and parsley. Many New Orleans restaurants have their own particular version. Some meuniere sauces are made by combining a rich brown stock with butter, lemon juice, Worcestershire sauce, and minced parsley. The LaFranca version was simple--their regular lemon butter sauce was cooked just a bit longer to give it a richer color and deeper flavor.
4 soft-shell crabs, about 4 ounces each
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
2/4 teaspoon cayenne
1 cup buttermilk
2 large eggs
1 cup cracker meal Vegetable oil, for frying
12 tablespoons (1 ½ sticks) unsalted butter
1/2 cup blanched sliced almonds
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 ½ tablespoons Worcestershire
Pinch of salt
The Swiss Absinthe is a reference to one of the three categories of absinthe made in the 1800s. The name refers not to the manufacturing locale but to the highest grade of absinthe made.
In this cocktail, the anise-flavored liqueur is combined with cold half-and-half, but you can certainly use chilled milk or heavy cream. Orgeat syrup is made with almonds, sugar, and rose water or orange-flower water. It's available at most wine and liquor stores, and also can be found through online retailers.
1 1/2 ounces Pernod or Herbsaint
3/4 ounce orgeat syrup
1 large egg white
4 ounces cold half-and-half
Combine all the ingredients in a cocktail shaker and shake vigorously. Strain into a chilled martini glass or white wine goblet and serve.
Excerpted from Emeril's Delmonico by Emeril Lagasse Copyright © 2005 by Emeril Lagasse. Excerpted by permission.
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Posted September 26, 2009
No text was provided for this review.