Recipe courtesy of Rudy Speckamp

Soft Shell Crabs with Corn Relish, Field Greens and Roasted Red Pepper Sauce

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  • Level: Advanced
  • Total: 1 hr 30 min
  • Prep: 1 hr
  • Cook: 30 min
  • Yield: 4 servings
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1 quart peanut oil

8 ounces all-purpose flour

2 ounces cornstarch

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1/4 teaspoon ground fennel

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 cup club soda

4 egg whites, beaten until foamy

8 small soft shell crabs, cleaned

Corn Relish, recipe follows

Roasted Red Pepper Sauce, recipe follows

2 cups mixed field greens, for garnish

Corn Relish:

2 ears corn, husked and silk removed

2 tablespoons olive oil

3 ounces asparagus, sliced into 1/2-inch pieces

4 ounces mushrooms, sliced

1/4 cup diced red pepper

1 small jalapeno, diced, without seeds

1 green onion, thinly sliced

2 tablespoons light brown sugar 

3 tablespoons cider vinegar

1/2 tablespoon dry mustard

Dash hot pepper sauce

1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

1/2 teaspoon salt

Roasted Red Pepper Sauce:

1/2 cup roasted red pepper puree

4 shallots, diced

4 ounces cider vinegar

1/4 cup heavy cream 

2 ounces lemon juice

8 ounces unsalted butter, cubed

Salt, to taste


  1. In a deep saucepan, heat peanut oil to 350 degrees F. 
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, cornstarch, pepper, fennel and salt. Whisk in club soda and egg whites to form a smooth batter. Dip soft shell crabs in batter and fry in batches until golden brown, about 4 minutes per batch. Drain on paper towels. 
  3. Serve crabs with Corn Relish. Drizzle with Roasted Red Pepper Sauce and garnish with a pile of greens.

Corn Relish:

Yield: 6 servings
  1. Steam corn kernels until crisp-tender, about 3 to 5 minutes, set aside. Cut the kernels from the cob into a mixing bowl. 
  2. In a large skillet, heat olive oil over medium-high heat. Add asparagus and mushrooms, cook until mushrooms give off their liquid and start to brown, about 3 to 5 minutes. Add red pepper, jalapeno and green onion. Cook just until scallions wilt, about 2 minutes. Add remaining ingredients, bring to a boil. Stir in corn mixture and cook until corn is heated through. 

Roasted Red Pepper Sauce:

  1. Combine pepper puree, shallots, and vinegar in a non-reactive saucepan. Bring to a simmer and simmer until shallots are tender. Add cream and stir to combine. Add lemon juice and whisk in butter, 1 piece at a time, until sauce is smooth and thickened. Season with salt, to taste.