- 1 1/2 to 2 Pound large hard-shell crabs
- 3/4 Cups canola oil
- 3/4 Cups all-purpose flour, sifted
- 3 medium yellow onions, diced medium
- 1 bunch celery, diced medium
- 4 medium green bell peppers, diced medium
- 2 Tablespoons minced garlic
- 1 Teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1 Pinch of each dried oregano, basil and thyme
- 4 large bay leaves
- Salt and freshly ground pepper
- 1 Pound okra, sliced 1/4 inch thick
- 1 14.5 oz can diced tomatoes
- 3 quarts stock (fish, shrimp, or crab) or water
- 1 Pound medium shrimp, shelled and deveined
- 1 quart shucked oysters, in their liquid
- 1 Pound jumbo lump crab meat
- 8 Cups cooked white rice, for serving
- Louisiana hot sauce amd Worcestershire, to taste
- 1 bunch green onions, thinly sliced
- File powder
Remove the top shells of the crabs along with the deadmen (gills) and discard them. Crack the crabs in half, reserve.
Heat the oil in a large 8 quarts Dutch oven until smoking, about 5 minutes. Gradually add the flour and cook over high heat, stirring constantly until the roux is the color of milk chocolate, 3 to 5 minutes; Being careful not to burn.
Add the garlic, onions, bell pepper and celery and cook for 5 minutes until wilted. Add in tomatoes, cayenne pepper, herbs, and bay leaves. Cook for about 3 minutes.
Gradually add 3 quarts of stock to the pot, stirring constantly. Add the crabs and okra. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer and cook for 1 hour; skimming often. Add the shrimp and cook for 5 minutes.
Add the crabmeat, oysters and their liquor and bring just to a boil over moderate heat. Add Worcestershire, hot sauce and salt and pepper to taste. Serve immediately over the rice and garnish with green onions and dusting of file.