Soft-shell crab is one of the last live animals you'll find in a grocery store. These days, the animals we purchase are dead and butchered, no longer resembling the wild beasts they once were.
Soft-shells come a-wriggling, fresh and lively. Unlike lobsters, which can be tossed into a steam bath straight from the store, these crabs require a bit of prep. As a result, too many home cooks pass up the opportunity to cook them at home.
But luckily, preparing a soft-shell crab is simpler than mincing an onion; you don't even need a knife to do it.
The first thing you want to do is kill the crab. (After all, it's more humane to butcher a dead animal than a live one.)Turn the crab on his or her back. This is where I take a moment to thank the crab for becoming my dinner. It's hokey, but it makes me feel better about what comes next.