An upscale version of traditional Caesar Salad with big chunks of real crab meat and avocado slices, topped with the best homemade Caesar Dressing.
I have to give credit to my friend Deb for the name of this dish. It started out as an idea that changed into another idea, then changed again as I was making it. The end result was surprisingly good but a bit convoluted, kind of like Caesar salad meets guacamole meets lobster roll meets crab legs. I liked the way it looked so I sent Deb a picture and described what it was. She sent back the idea for the name and I loved it. Crabocado Caesar Salad. Catchy!
I’d really intended to have some king crab legs with melted butter but I thought maybe I should make something a bit healthier. So I started thinking about all the flavours that go well with seafood. Lemon. Garlic. Then I started thinking about this amazing lobster roll I had in Maine.
It was delicious! But later, as we enjoyed a rough overnight crossing by boat to Yarmouth, Nova Scotia, I did barf it all up. Sadly. What a waste!
In spite of the memory, I still wanted to replicate those flavours. Maybe I could make something similar to that without serving it in a bun. Maybe in an avocado. Mr. H doesn’t really like avocado. But I do. I love the creaminess. I’ve often said I could eat one with a spoon like ice cream. So instead of combining the crab with the avocado I thought….I will top lettuce with slices of avocado then put warm crab on top! And dress with homemade caesar dressing.
Crab legs are pretty easy to find in larger grocery stores or seafood markets. Sometimes they come pre cut like these ones so the crab is easier to remove. Heat them up while you’re assembling the salad. They’re already cooked so just put them in a large roasting pan covered with foil, then steam in a hot oven for about 15 minutes.
Slice up a few strips of bacon and cook until crispy. Break up into pieces and drain on a paper lined plate.
While the crab is heating up, rinse and tear up some fresh romaine. Make up the Homemade Caesar Dressing. Arrange the lettuce on plates, then top with sliced avocado. Make sure you choose an avocado that isn’t too green or too ripe. It should still feel firm (ish) but not hard.
Here’s how to properly (and safely) cut an avocado. Slice the avocado lengthwise all the way around. Twist each half in the opposite direction and it will come apart easily. Take a sharp knife and CAREFULLY hit the pit – like a chopping motion. Then twist the knife a quarter turn and pull out the pit. Don’t try to pull the pit off the knife with your hands, it’s slippery and you will cut yourself. I know this from experience! The easiest way is to use a ledge – hang the knife over the end of the counter and pull back to release the pit.
Scoop the avocado out with a spoon and cut with the flat side down into slices. Arrange them on the salad any way you like. Fanning them out looks very nice.
Once the crab is heated, remove full leg pieces by cracking the shell in half or cutting lengthwise with scissors. Lay large chunks on top of each salad. Don’t forget about the flaky meat inside the knuckles and large end of the claws. Use a fork to scrape it out and sprinkle that on top of the salad too.
Top with bacon pieces and a generous amount of Caesar Dressing. You should have more than enough for 4 salads with this recipe. It will keep in the fridge for at least a week.
Here’s the recipe:
Crabocado Caesar Salad
Crabocado Caesar Salad Ingredients Approximately 1 lb king crab legs, about 1 leg per person 1 large head romaine lettuce 1 avocado, sliced 2 slices bacon Caesar Dressing 1 large clove garlic, minced 1/2 tsp anchovy paste 2 Tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice 1/2 tsp Dijon mustard 1/2 tsp Worcestershire sauce 1/4 C mayonnaise 1/4 C evoo 1/4 C freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese pinch of salt and pepper Method Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Arrange crab legs and claws in a single layer in a baking dish. Pour approximately 1 cup boiling water in the bottom and cover with foil. Steam in the oven for about 10 minutes if thawed and 15 minutes if still frozen. Prepare Caesar dressing by whisking together all ingredients. Rinse and chop romaine. Arrange avocado slice on top. Top with warm crab meat. Season if desired with fresh cracked black pepper.