Fresh and Light: Thai Crab Salad

It’s great having visitors in New York. It’s the perfect excuse for take day-long walks in interesting neighborhoods, for going to museums and open air pickle markets, and indulging in a few seriously festive meals. When the fun is over, though, we could all use a little detox. Some fresh vegetables. At most, some light seafood.

It turned out that this was a winner, and just what we needed after several evenings of intensive feasting.

Really, what I have for you here is a great dressing recipe that doesn’t even require any oil. Fish sauce and citrus, rice vinegar, mint and cilantro—it’s lovely stuff. You add the vegetables you desire (though you shouldn’t skip the quick-pickled onion) and top with protein of your choice. You could throw some cooked steak on here (or even sliced roast beef from the deli counter), or grilled chicken or shrimp, so don’t get hung up on the crab (especially if you can’t find any good fresh crabmeat.)

Thai Crab Salad
serves four

For dressing
Juice of 1 lime
Juice of 1 lemon
1 T prepared, chopped lemongrass
1/2 cup rice vinegar (unseasoned)
3 T fish sauce
2 T sugar
2 T water
1″ ginger knob, peeled and grated
1 T chopped cilantro (stems and leaves)
1 T chopped mint (leaves)

For crab
1 lb crabmeat
zest of one lemon
squeeze sriracha

For salad
1 red onion
2 small carrots, peeled
1/3 chopped mint leaves
1/3 cup chopped cilantro (stems and leaves)
1 cubanelle pepper
1 red pepper
2 kirby cucumbers
about 15 kumquats
salad greens (I used 2 bunches arugula)

additional lime wedges, mint, and cilantro for garnish

Mix all ingredients for dressing in a medium sized bowl, stirring well, and let sit while you pick through the crab for any shells. In a large bowl, combine crab with zest of one lemon and 1/2 cup of the dressing. Add a squeeze of sriracha and stir. Cover and refrigerate crab while you prepare the rest of the salad.

Chop red onion and add to the dressing mixture to pickle it a little. Grate carrots in long strips using vegetable peeler and stir into dressing as well. Wash salad greens well and place in large salad bowl. Chop cubanelle and red pepper, add to salad bowl. Remove ends of cucumber (which can be bitter) and slice.

Add to salad. Slice each kumquat into coins, including peel, and add to salad. When ready to serve, toss lettuce with dressing. Pile each plate with dressed salad and top with crab. Garnish with mint and cilantro and serve with lime wedges for squeezing and additional Sriracha.

In Uncategorized, asian, salad, seafood

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