Thursday, September 8, 2011

Smoked Crab Meat Potato Skins! Even if Your Team Hates Winning, Your Can Tailgate Like a Champion

So, my team always loses. If you want to be a millionaire, just simply ask me who I want to win at anything, and then bet against them. Of course, you have to be reasonably sure that I am not lying with my response, which may be a challenge, but there are no guarantees in life. Except, of course, death, taxes, and the fact that my team ALWAYS loses.
Now this wasn't always true. After all, my beloved University of Tennessee Volunteers did win the BCS National Championship in 1998, and the Rock did become the Undisputed WWE Heavyweight Champion of the World multiple times back in the day, so I have to ask, what happened around 2003 that caused any competitive team or individual that I care anything about (including minor league hockey teams like the Knoxville Ice Bears and the least annoying contestants on Chopped) to lose, lose, lose and lose so utterly consistently? Not sure, but I'm launching a thorough investigation.

So, to take the edge off of the inevitable defeat that any team I root for this season will suffer, I am drowning our mutual misery in AWESOME tailgating food. I mean, it hurts to see that last second field goal get blocked, but it hurts a little less when you can turn your face away from the tv screen and see a Smoked Crab Meat Potato Skin sitting there staring back at you.

So, if you are like me, and you are a ferocious competitor, but you are suffering from a voodoo curse that riddles your teams with injuries, immigration problems, and dwarf-pitfighting ring scandals, add this recipe and the ones that will follow for the next couple weeks to your tailgating repertoire, and it might just take the edge off...........................

Also, if you want to see other great ideas for washing your football woes away with awesome food, check out Robyn over at She is a grilling pro, and is featuring top notch tailgating food on her website as we speak!

So, this recipe can be used as an awesome crab dip, but for potato skin purposes, the wet ingredients should be dialed back somewhat, so it can be used as a firm topping.

Crab Topping
3-4 clusters of crab legs, or enough to get 3/4 lb of meat
8 oz cream cheese, softened
2 strips bacon, crisped and crumbled
1/4 cup cheddar cheese, shredded
1/2 cup mayonnaise (Duke’s is the best)
4 green onions, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 lemon, juiced
2 tbsp Worchestershire sauce
Sriracha chili sauce to your heat preference
Salt and pepper to taste

Place whole crab clusters (I used 3 Dungeness at 1.5 lbs) onto a preheated smoker or grill set for indirect grilling at 225-250 degrees. Place soaked wood chips on the coals and let cook for about 45 minutes.

Extract every last bit of meat from the crab bodies, legs, knuckles and claws. If you struggle, email me. I am the world's most incredible crab meat extractor. I can do seminars or group lessons, but I am EXTREMELY expensive. Talk to my agent.

Mix the meat with the other ingredients, adding the wet ingredients like mayo and cream cheese a little at a time, so the topping doesn't get too sloppy.

Potato Skin Shells
Make the shells at home in the oven before the tailgating begins, and then add the topping at your tailgating location.
Scrub 4 large russet potatoes clean, and dry with paper towels
Poke several holes per side with a fork to prevent Potatsplosions, and rub the spuds down with olive oil.
Sprinkle with kosher salt and bake at 400 degrees for 45 minutes to 1 hour until soft. Allow to cool, then cut in half long ways, then cut long ways again so that each potato makes 4 long wedges. Carefully scoop the center out of each quarter, leaving about 1/4 inch from the skin.
Cover inside and out in olive oil, sprinkle again with salt, and place in oven at 450 degrees for 10 minutes on each side, until the shells are crispy.

Add a scoop of the crab topping to each of the skins, and place on the grill or in the oven for about 5 minutes at high heat until the crab topping gets golden brown and bubbly. Sprinkle with crushed red pepper and chopped green onions and serve raging hot.

If you share in my curse, then you should definitely start making football party food like this for your friends. It will distract them from realizing that it is YOU who is killing their team's record. It has worked for me for years.............
Go Vols!

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