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King Crab Pasta With Tomato and Ouzo Sauce

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I love fish and seafood and it the summer months, I crave lighter dishes – foods that aren’t meat. Crab and lobster are rivals when it comes to gaining the attention of seafood lovers but if we’re talking about King Crab, they win “claws down”!

This dish makes use of frozen crab legs, which is what you will find at some supermarkets and many fish/seafood purveyors. The crab has been pre-cooked so your goal is to re-heat. I find placing them in the oven as the best method.

The sauce is reminiscent of a pasta you may find in Greece, served with lobster, langoustine or shrimp. Crab works wonderfully with this sauce as well!

King Crab Pasta With Tomato and Ouzo Sauce

(serves 4)

For the crab

500gr. package of King Crab

1/4 cup olive oil

2 cloves of garlic minced

1 Tbsp. chopped parsley

For the sauce

1 stick unsalted butter

1 medium onion, diced

1/4 cup diced fennel

1 bay leaf

1 cup tomato sauce (hand crushed plum tomatoes or fresh)

2 shots of Ouzo

1/3 cup of dry white wine

1/2 cup cream

250 gr. of spaghetti or linguine

reserved pasta water


1/4 cup chopped parsley

fresh ground pepper

  1. If using frozen King Crab, thaw crab overnight in your fridge. Melt the butter and add garlic and parsley and pour over crab. Place on parchment-lined baking sheet. Reserve and pre-heat oven to 400F.
  2. Place a large pot of water on your stove-top and bring to a boil. Season water well with salt, add pasta and cook 8 minutes.
  3. Place a large skillet over medium heat and add butter, onions, garlic, fennel, bay and stir. Cook for about 4-5 minutes or until the onions are translucent.
  4. Now add the tomato, stir in then the wine and Ouzo, cream, salt and pepper and simmer for 15-20 minutes or until sauce has thickened. Take off the heat, remove bay leaf and keep warm.
  5. Place your crab in your pre-heated oven for 5-6 minutes. Take out of the oven, place some crab on the bottom of each plate.
  6. Add pasta in the sauce plus a ladle hot pasta water and toss in. Divide and place on top of crab legs. Top with another crab piece or claw, pour over any crab juices from the baking tray, parsley and fresh ground pepper and serve.

Pro Tip: Crab legs have their shells pre-cut. You may take kitchen scissors and split them before placing in the oven.

Note: Don’t like Ouzo? Try using Metaxa instead.

© 2020, Peter Minaki. All rights reserved.


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