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Fresh Crab Escabèche

David Kinch's version of escabeche (marinated cooked seafood) combines sweet crab and crisp vegetables in a spiced-vinegar mix.

  • Total Time:
  • Servings: 8 to 10

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  • 1 teaspoon coriander seeds
  • 1 teaspoon fennel seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1 1/2 cups pure olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 large shallot, thinly sliced
  • 1 red bell pepper, thinly sliced
  • 2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 1 large carrot, cut into fine matchsticks
  • 3 tablespoons sherry vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon chopped thyme leaves
  • Small pinch of saffron threads
  • Salt
  • 1 1/2 pounds jumbo lump crab, picked over
  • 3 tablespoons chopped flat-leaf parsley
  • Crusty bread, for serving


  1. In a large saucepan, toast the coriander, fennel and cumin seeds over moderate heat until fragrant, about 1 minute. Transfer the seeds to a plate and let cool. Finely grind the spices and return them to the saucepan. Add the olive oil, onion, shallot, bell pepper, garlic, carrot and sherry vinegar and bring to a gentle simmer over moderately low heat. Cook until the bell pepper is crisp-tender, about 8 minutes. Add the thyme and saffron and season with salt. Let cool.
  2. Put the crab and parsley in a large bowl and pour the escabèche mixture on top. Gently toss, being careful not to break up the crab. Refrigerate until chilled, at least 4 hours or overnight. Serve with crusty bread.

Suggested Pairing

Serve this bright escabèche with a tangy, medium-bodied California Sauvignon Blanc.

Contributed By Photo © Cedric Angeles Published May 2013

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497974 2013-12-06 David Kinch spanish|appetizers-starters|salads|10|8|make-ahead may-2013 recipes,fresh-crab-escabeche 497974