King Crab Salad with Grapefruit and Avocado

Photo: Fredrika Stjärne

This lovely seafood salad was an improvisation. "I made it with what I had in the house," Piero Incisa della Rocchetta recalls. "Scarcity breeds creativity." He uses grapefruit juice both to glaze the crab and to make the sweet-tangy salad dressing.

Yield: 8
Total:
Recipe from Food & Wine

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Recipe Time

Total: 1 Hour


Ingredients

  • 3 large red grapefruits
  • 1/2 small red onion, very thinly sliced
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • Salt
  • 1 1/2 pounds (2 1/2 pounds in the shell) cooked shelled king crab meat, cut into 3-by-1/2-inch pieces
  • 2 Hass avocados, peeled, halved lengthwise and very thinly sliced
  • 16 1/2 unsalted roasted almonds, cracked
  • 2 tablespoons cilantro leaves

Preparation

  1. Using a sharp paring knife, peel the skin and bitter white pith from the grapefruits. Working over a bowl, cut in between the membranes to release the grapefruit sections. Squeeze the juice from the membranes into the bowl; there should be 1/2 cup.
  2. In a bowl, mix the onion, soy sauce and lemon juice with 4 tablespoons of the oil. Stir in 1/4 cup of grapefruit juice from the bowl and season with salt. Let stand for 10 minutes.
  3. In a skillet, heat the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil until shimmering. Add the crab and cook over high heat, turning once, 30 seconds. Add the remaining 1/4 cup of grapefruit juice and cook until the crab is lightly caramelized, about 10 seconds. Remove from the heat.
  4. Arrange the grapefruit in shallow bowls. Layer the avocado on top, then the crab. Spoon the dressing over the crab, garnish with the almonds and cilantro and serve.
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