Whole Roasted Garlic Crab

I haven't actually prepared this dish before. It's a modified version of a recipe from the Sunday supplement to the SF Chronicle. Modifications are per someone on the 'net who will remain nameless unless I hear back from him that it is ok to post his name here.

This recipe is, in theory, similar to the garlic crab house specialty at Crustacean (in Los Angeles and San Francisco) -- aka Thanh Long (the original crab house, in San Francisco, from the owners of Crustacean).


  • 2 live Dungeness crabs (about 2 lbs. each)
  • 1 1/2 c. unsalted butter (3 sticks)
  • 2 T. coarse cracked black pepper
  • 8 cloves of garlic, crushed or minced
  • salt, to taste


  1. Boil the crabs for 3 minutes in a large, salted pot of boiling water, submerging the crabs entirely. Drain, discarding the liquid
  2. Cool crabs until they can be handled, and then clean. Crack the crabs' backs.
  3. Melt 1 c. of the butter along with the pepper and garlic.
  4. Stuff the crabs with the butter sauce, and then toss the crabs to distribute.
  5. Dash with salt (optional).
  6. Preheat oven to the highest temperature you can (probably 550 degrees Fahrenheit).
  7. Roast crabs until golden brown and bubbling, about 8-10 minutes.
  8. Melt the remaining stick of butter.
  9. Serve on a warmed platter with the melted butter for dipping.
Serves 2 as a main course, 4 as a first dish.