I guess it’s all these photos I’ve been sharing lately of our recent Holiday Vacation to the Pacific Northwest that has my mind occupied with bounties from the sea. Okay, so these Crab Legs actually hail from Alaska. While it might be a stretch, Alaska is about as far North as you can get. And I love the Pacific Northwest.
Crab legs are so sweet. I love mine with lots and lots of butter. Sometimes I wonder, is it the crab I adore or the butter dripping from my chin? Hum, that’s one I’ll need to think on. In the meantime, let’s get to cooking, shall we?
Smoky Grilled King Crab Legs
Wood Chunks or Chips as needed for good smoke
3 lbs Alaska King Crab Legs
3 tablespoons Olive Oil or Clarified Butter
3 tablespoons Old Bay
2 sheets of heavy-duty aluminum foil
Lemon slices for serving
Melted Butter for serving
Soak wood chips as directed by the manufacture – usually 30 to 40 minutes.
While the chips are soaking, build a good fire for indirect cooking.
Place wood chips in smoker box in the heated grill and wait for smoke to begin. A light blue smoke is desired rather than white smoke. (NOTE: Practice generating smoke in the method of choice prior to cooking – temperature of the grill and restricting air flow to the burning wood will be the primary way to control the quality of smoke.)
Rinse crab legs under cold water to remove any icy glaze, pat dry with paper towels.
Cut slits on one side of the shells to ‘open up” strip in the shell to expose the meat. Quality kitchen shears will be the best tool for this job.
Drizzle olive oil onto expose crab meat and sprinkle with seasoning.
Lay crab legs on grates on opposite side of direct heat, meat exposed side up. Use the foil to make a scrunchy base to hold the legs and keep from rolling.
Close hood and smoke-heat legs for about 8-10 minutes or until the crab is warm and no hotter than 145 degrees. If you are using a smaller grill you may need to rotate the legs to create even cooking so legs closest to the heat do not cook too fast while those further away don’t cook.
Serve with lemon, melted butter or other condiments as desired.