THESE STUFFED SHRIMP ARE LUXURIOUSLY FILLED WITH THE LUMP-CRABCAKE MIXTURE FROM PAGE 57 OF DXD. The combination of shrimp and crab adds up to more than the sum of the ingredients. These are inspired by the ones served at Crisfield Seafood Restaurant in Silver Spring, a place that’s been around nearly 70 years cooking authentic Eastern Shore recipes.
The assembled pieces are delicate, but once they begin to fry, they hold together well. If you feel insecure, use a toothpick to hold the butterflied ends of the shrimp together.
These stuffed shrimp can also be baked in the oven: Add two tablespoons mayonnaise to the panko to make a paste, and slather the bread crumbs all over the shrimp. Bake in a 400° degree oven until the crumbs are golden brown, about 10 minutes. Turn over and cook another 6 minutes.
This recipe calls for colossal shrimp, sometimes called tiger prawns. They should be 8 to a pound or so—that’s why they are often listed as “U-8.” You can make these with smaller shrimp, but add another one to a serving, and use less filling in each one.
8 colossal shrimp (U-8)
2 Tbs rice wine vinegar
1 Tbs vegetable oil
1/2 lb lump bluefin crabmeat
4 Tbs butter (1/2 stick)
1/2 tsp salt
1 Tbs Worcestershire sauce
1 Tbs lemon juice
1/4 cup onion, finely diced
1/4 cup Italian parsley, chopped
1 Tbs mayonnaise
1/4 tsp dry mustard
1/4 tsp celery salt
1 egg, lightly beaten
2 Tbs heavy cream
1 cup + 2 Tbs panko bread crumbs
1 cup vegetable oil
Thaw shrimp, if necessary. Peel shrimp, preserving tail segment. Using a sharp paring knife, butterfly shrimp by cutting in half symmetrically to the tail. Remove vein. Combine oil and rice vinegar into an emulsion, and add prepared shrimp, tossing to coat.
Carefully pick through crabmeat and discard any cartilage. Break up the lumps into smaller pieces with a fork, leaving some lumps whole. Melt butter in a 10-inch skillet. When foaming subsides, add crabmeat and salt and toss to combine. Allow to cool. In a mixing bowl, combine Worcestershire sauce, lemon, onion, parsley, mayonnaise, mustard, celery salt, egg, cream and 2 tablespoons of bread crumbs and fold to combine. Add cooled crabmeat mixture and combine well. Make 8 balls and place in refrigerator to cool for 30 minutes.
Spread 1 cup bread crumbs in a shallow dish. Make each stuffed shrimp by wrapping the butterflied shrimp around the crab stuffing, pressing into the panko to make a disk. Holding the whole thing together in your hand, carefully flip the stuffed shrimp over and coat with crumbs completely. Place 8 finished stuffed shrimp on foil or wax paper to dry for 15 minutes.
Heat oil in a 10-inch skillet to 360°. Fry stuffed shrimp in two batches, placing them gently in pan and leaving alone until golden on underside, about 4 minutes, then turn gently using spatula plus a spoon to aid in the process. The shrimp will be fragile, but the crust should hold them together. Cook on second side another 3 minutes. Place cooked shrimp on paper towel to drain and repeat with remaining stuffed shrimp. Keep warm in a 200° oven if necessary. Serve two shrimp each with cocktail sauce and coleslaw.