The Many Varied Styles of Crab Salad

When one thinks of crab salad one often thinks of it in one certain way or another. Perhaps lump crab meat served on a bed of lettuce with a Green Goddess dressing, or mixed with celery and mayonnaise into a creamy mixture to be tucked away in a finger roll as part of a sandwich platter.

The truth is, though, that there are as many different sorts of crab salad as there are types of pasta or ways to prepare a roast.

Evidence of crab meat as part of human diet reaches as far back as ancient Rome and Greece. Art and literature depict the Greeks and Romans partaking of crabs, though evidence suggests that crab meat wasn't eaten enthusiastically until the middle of the twelfth century. As you can imagine the different varieties of ways to prepare crab meat, and crab salad are vast!

Not only are there many different ways to eat crab salad but there are also many health benefits to making crab meat part of your diet. For example, did you know that crab meat is a good source of omega-3 fatty acids which are known to strengthen your body's resistance to infections and help reduce the risks of cardiovascular disease? Also, if you are diabetic or trying to lose weight, crab meat is a carbohydrate free food.

The internet is a wonderful source of recipes for crab salad and one can find pretty much anything to suit their taste, simply by searching for key ingredients or flavors.

We have gathered for you a sampling of just a few of the different types of crab salad that are out there to tempt your palate.

Pasta and Crab Salad

Macaroni and crab salad are two summer favorites. In this delicious combination we bring both flavors together for a medley that is a true comfort food.

Ingredients:

1 package medium pasta shells

1 – 2 pounds of cooked crab meat (shelled or picked through)

8 cups of baby greens (spinach, arugula, baby romaine, etc.), washed and dried

3/4 cup of mayonnaise (light mayonnaise can be used if preferred)

1 teaspoon finely grated onion (this is used for flavoring, you do not want large chunks of onion in this salad)

1 teaspoon finely grated garlic

Finely grated zest from one lemon.

Juice from the above lemon (approximately 3 – 4 tablespoons)

Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

Prepare pasta as per package directions for al dente style. Rinse and drain completely.

Break crab meat carefully into bite sized pieces.

Mix together the mayonnaise, onion, garlic, zest, juice and salt and pepper. The flavor should be quite lemony and salty. Adjust seasonings to taste at this step – these flavors will even out.

 Mix the pasta with the dressing and coat well. The pasta will absorb some of the dressing as it rests.

Gently mix in the crab meat and spinach.

Check again for flavor, adjust as necessary.

This pasta and crab salad can be made a head, however, the crab meat and the spinach should not be added until just before serving.

Pea & Crab Salad


Perhaps pasta and mayonnaise would sit too heavily on you. Maybe you're looking for something a bit lighter to serve as an appetizer to a heavier meal. In that case, we have a pea and crab salad that may be just perfect to present to your guests or to whip up as a light, healthy lunch.

Ingredients:

2 cups fresh peas (or thawed frozen)

Salt – to taste

Ground white pepper – to taste

1 finely chopped medium onion

1/4 orange bell pepper – cored and minced

1/4 yellow bell pepper – cored and minced

8 ounces cooked crab meat (shelled or picked through)

3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

Lemon juice from 1/2 large lemon

4 iceberg lettuce leaves, rinsed and dried

Directions:

Bring a small pot of water to boil and add salt.

Poach the peas in water until bright green – about 30 seconds. Remove with slotted spoon, drain and cool.

 Poach onions for 15 seconds. Remove with slotted spoon, drain and cool.

In a small bowl, combine poached peas and onions, bell peppers, crab, olive oil and lemon juice.

Taste and adjust salt and pepper seasoning to taste.

Spoon mixture into lettuce cups and serve.

Avocado and Crab Salad with Fruit Salsa


Perhaps you're looking for something a bit different. Something to impress your guests and introduce them to flavor combinations that vary from the usual. Here we have a fruit and avocado crab salad that is as appealing as it is simple. The flavors work well together, the fruit salsa enhancing and not over powering the delicate flavor of the crab meat itself.

Ingredients:

1 pound crab meat (shelled or picked through)

1 3/4 cups fresh peaches or mangoes diced

 1/4 of a medium onion – diced

1/4 of a medium red bell pepper, cored and diced

1/2 tablespoon basil

1 tablespoon chopped parsley

The juice from one large lime (approximately 2 tablespoons)

salt and pepper – to taste

3 ripe avocados

Directions:

Gently mix together everything but the avocados in a bowl and combine well.

Taste for seasoning and adjust accordingly.

Halve, pit, peal and slice the avocado.

Fan half of an avocado on each plate and serve crab salad mixture along side.

Hopefully the recipes offered here have served as a way to pique your interest in the many different types of crab salad that you can add to your diet.

allrecipes.com , dinersjournal.blogs.nytimes.com, foodtimeline.org

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