Jul 26, 2011

Crab Time!

This time of year means crabs.  And I've been having a major envie (craving) for some.  Recipes for Crab & Corn Soup, Crab Bisque, & Crab & Shrimp Stew have been smacking me in the face when I open my cookbooks.  But it's July.  A hot, dry July.  Definitely not soup, bisque, or stew season.

So I did what any sane, logical person would do.  I cranked up the oven and made crab quiche.

The middle of summer is when I always have crabs pinching my brain.  It also happens when I wash my hair.

Once--for a couple of weeks--every time I'd wash my hair, I'd start thinking about going crabbing.  It drove me crazy.  Why am I thinking about this right now?  A head full of suds and nets baited with chicken necks...what's the connection? 

Finally, a teensy current flowed through those frayed wires in my brain.  (Maybe I shouldn't have been getting my head wet.)  Water lilies!  My shampoo was water lily scented.  The piers I crabbed from as a child were surrounded by them.  Water lilies.  Not bottles of shampoo.

We left the house early to get to Lafitte (south of NOLA) by dawn.  Stepping outside onto the driveway in a hush so we wouldn't wake the neighbors, I was always surprised by the heat and humidity that time of morning.  Even though I'd experienced it hundreds of times, it was still surprising.  The smallest hint of coolness once we got out to the water woke me up, made me take notice.  The smell of water lilies hung like fog in the air, suspended in the humidity.  If I wasn't completely awake by then, that did it.  I was like a dog picking up a scent.  I knew something was coming.

Mom says she just remembers the smell of rotting bait and dead crabs. 
I'll stick with the water lilies.  Thanks.

We'd tie bait to the nets, dad would tie them off to the posts on a maze of piers, and we'd lower them into the almost black water.  My dad always did the tying--he worked summers on tug boats as a teen and knew a fancy knot or two.  Then we'd wait for the bait to work its stinky magic, thinking about all the Big Daddy crabs we'd catch.  I was always both excited to catch and nervous because I didn't want to get pinched.  When it was time, we'd pull the nets up just right.  Slow and quiet at first.  Gently, steadily pulling the line hand over hand.  Then pick the net up quick and level just as it met the surface to keep the crabs from swimming away.

Sadly, the place where I crabbed as a child is gone--another Katrina victim.  But let me go wash my hair...

Crab Quiche

1 9 " pie shell
1 c grated sharp cheddar
about 1/2 cup chopped roasted red pepper
8 oz container of crabmeat
about 1/2 c chopped green onion
3 large eggs
1 c half and half
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
Tony's Creole seasoning, to taste
about 1/4 c grated sharp cheddar

Prick the pie shell with a fork and bake for about 10-12 minutes at 400.

Sprinkle the bottom of the pie shell with 1 cup cheese, red peppers, crab, and green onion.

Whisk together the eggs, half & half, and seasonings.  Pour over the crab mixture.  Sprinkle with remaining 1/4 cup cheese.  Bake at 350 for about 30 minutes, or until set.  When a butter knife comes out clean, it's done!

To help each serving keep its shape, wait 10 minutes before cutting.

Crab Quiche served with Corn Maque Chou

Don't know 'bout you, but I'm diggin in.

Linking this week with:

Make a Food-"e"-Friend Monday @ The Saturday Evening Pot
Tuesdays at the Table @ All The Small Stuff
Tasty Tuesday @ Naptime Creations
Hearth and Soul vol 58 @ Mom's Sunday Cafe
Delectable Tuesday @ Home Sweet Farm
Let's Do Brunch @ The Life and Times of the 21st Century Housewife and My Sweet & Savory
Turning the Table Thursday @ Around My Family Table
What's Cooking Thursday @ Feeding Four
Potluck Friday @ EKat's Kitchen guest hosted by girlichef
Foodie Friday @ Little Brick Ranch
Fresh Food Friday @ la bella vita
Friday Food @ Mom Trends
Simply Delish @ KB & Whitesnakes Home


  1. I'm tired of living in the desert! I want to live someplace I can go crabbing...with water lily scent!
    Or at least buy "blue crab"
    In the west, we have "king crab" or 'Alaskan crab' or "snow crab"

    I so much want to try blue crab or soft shell crabs. My mouth waters everytime I hear about them.

    Silly huh?

  2. When I think of going crabbing I think of Old Bay seasoning and lots of butter. Funny how we associate certain smells with certain foods/activities. I bet it's nice to walk into a store and buy fresh crab. The best I can get here is the pasteurized stuff and even then the lump crab meat is about $20 per pound.

    My mouth is watering over your crab quiche. I know it has to be out of this world delicious.

  3. This sounds like such a lovely dish. I have never been crabbing, but I so enjoyed reading your memories of it. I'm sorry the place you went crabbing was gone, but I'm so glad it will live on in your memory! (And I love the smell of water lilys too!) Thank you for sharing this wonderful post with the Hearth and Soul blog hop.

  4. I wish I lived somewhere where there was a crab season!

  5. Oh girl, you're killin' me with this one! I love crab everything, but your Crab Quiche looks divine! And with some maque choux, heaven! Loved the story, too.

  6. yes'mam, I remember those days dropping those nets over into the brackish waters, still do it when I get a chance but nowadays it's with wire traps - your quiche is certainly one to write home about, good stuff...

  7. Looking good. Thanks for sharing with Simly Delish.

  8. I think I gained weight just staring at that quiche.....wow. We need that on the menu. Looks so delish and creamy.

    I have never been crabbing but your memories brought back stories about my great grandfather fishing and crabbing.

  9. Crab is so good! My Mom worked on the crab docks in Eureka Ca, she picked crab meat on a canner line. We went crabbing at the crab camp in Oregon, it is fun. Sorry your crabbing spot is gone, there is just something about traditions and crabbing is one of them. That quiche looks so good, by the way.

  10. my hubby would LOVE This!

    Thanks for sharing at What's Cooking Thursdays!


  11. Crab is so ridiculously expensive up here we never even buy it. We do enjoy it though when we visit the States on holiday. We had some great crab in Seattle a few months ago!

  12. I grew up in Annapolis, we used to catch crabs in my back yard. Love this recipe. Thanks so much for sharing on Friday Food on Momtrends. I love checking out all the foodie creations. Enjoy the weekend.

  13. Great memories! The quiche looks fantastic.

  14. Hubbyman would be very, very happy at your house.

    Around My Family Table


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