Thursday, April 26, 2012

Devilishly good

We all have special food memories. Our company president, Pam Barefoot, shared this one: "In the late 1950s and early 1960s, my mother would take me on our annual trip to North Carolina's capital city, Raleigh, to shop for school clothes. A highlight of our trip was a visit to the long lunch counter at Woolworth's department store, where we would order deviled crabs. And those deviled crabs were heavenly, not devilish! I never could figure out why they called them 'deviled.' This was my only experience with crabs as a child, as we lived in the heart of sweet potato, hog, and tobacco country."

Try this recipe out at home:

Chesapeake Deviled Crab

2 tbsp. yellow onion, minced
2 tbsp. bell pepper, minced
2 tbsp. celery, minced
2 tbsp. butter, melted
2 tbsp. all-purpose flour
¾ cup milk
1 egg, beaten
1 tbsp. lemon juice
2 tsp. Dijon mustard
1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
Dash of hot sauce
1 tbsp. dry sherry (if desired)
1 tbsp. parsley, chopped
1/8 tsp. cayenne pepper
1 tsp. salt
½ tsp. black pepper
½ cup fine breadcrumbs (divide in half)
1 lb. fresh crabmeat or 2 tins crabmeat
6 to 8 clean crab shells or ramekins, lightly greased

Sautè onion, pepper, and celery in butter until tender. Blend in flour and gradually add milk, stirring constantly until thick. Remove from heat. In a mixing bowl, beat an egg and add lemon juice, mustard, sauces, sherry, and all seasonings except Chesapeake Bay Seasoning or paprika. Add cream sauce to the egg mixture. Blend in crabmeat and half of the fine breadcrumbs. Place mixture in well-greased crab shells or ramekins. Over low heat, lightly butter the remaining breadcrumbs. Put the buttered bread crumbs over the top of each shell and sprinkle with Chesapeake Bay Seasoning or paprika. Bake in a preheated oven at 375 degrees for 15 to 20 minutes or until golden brown. Makes about six servings. Enjoy!

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