Fusilli Bucati with Soft-Shell Crabs and Hot Chilies Recipe
Fusilli Bucati with Soft-Shell Crabs and Hot Chilies

Soft-shell crabs are one seafood species that is rarely available out of season. What we call "soft-shell" are typically blue crabs that have recently molted their exoskeletons and are still soft and 100 percent edible. In America, they're available in their natural state and alive from spring to late summer.

In this Fusilli Bucati with Soft-Shell Crabs and Hot Chilies pasta recipe, I pair the crabs with hot chilies and fusilli bucati. It's a supremely delicious, seasonal combination.

Fusilli Bucati with Soft-Shell Crabs and Hot Chilies Recipe

    Prep Time: 20 minutes

    Cook time: 50 minutes

    Yield: Serves 8 to 10 as an appetizer, 6 as a main course

Fusilli Bucati with Soft-Shell Crabs and Hot Chilies Recipe Ingredients

    6 live soft-shell crabs, "hotel"-sized

    Salt and freshly ground black pepper

    6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

    1 medium red onion, thinly sliced

    6 Italian frying peppers, cored, seeded, and julienned

    4 red jalapenos, cored, seeded, and julienned

    1/4 cup dry white wine

    2 cups basic tomato sauce (for quick results, try Mario Batali pasta sauces by Gia Russa)

    1 1/2 pounds fusilli bucati pasta

Fusilli Bucati with Soft-Shell Crabs and Hot Chilies Recipe Instructions

    Bring 8 quarts of water to a boil in a large pasta pot.

    While the water is heating, clean the soft-shell crabs by snipping off their faces with a pair of scissors and removing the skirts.

    Cut each soft-shell crab in half, season with salt and black pepper, and set aside.

    In a 12- to 14-inch saute pan, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat until smoking.

    Add the onions, Italian peppers, and jalapenos, and cook until softened, 8 to 10 minutes.

    Add the crab pieces and cook until the crabs are deep red and firm. Be careful not to break up the crabs with aggressive stirring.

    Add the white wine and the tomato sauce, and bring to a boil.

    Then lower the heat and simmer for 10 minutes.

    Meanwhile, add 2 tablespoons salt to the boiling water. Drop the fusilli into the boiling water and cook for 1 minute less than the package instructions indicate.

    Just before the pasta is done, carefully ladle 1/4 cup of the cooking water into the pan containing the crabs.

    Drain the pasta in a colander, and add it to the crab mixture. Toss over medium heat for about 30 seconds, until the pasta is nicely coated.

    Pour onto a heated platter, and serve immediately.

Fusilli Bucati with Soft-Shell Crabs, Fusilli Bucati Pasta, Soft-shell crabs, Italian


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Fusilli Bucati with Soft-Shell Crabs & Hot Chilies - Italian Pasta Recipes

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