Stone Crab Season Opens

Stone crab season starts October 15, and the prime time to get stone crab claws is at the beginning of the season when they are at their delicious best. The Bonefish Grill in Palm Beach Gardens will be offering locally sourced stone crab claws starting the week of October 17. Below, the restaurant’s chef shares the recipe for their signature house-made mustard sauce, perfect for complementing the sweet and succulent flavors of the claws.

Mustard Sauce

  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 4 tbsp. Dijon mustard
  • 1 tbsp. lemon juice
  • 1 tsp. Worcestershire
  • 1 tbsp. horseradish
  • Dash hot sauce

Combine all ingredients in a small bowl. Whisk together until smooth and creamy. Transfer to serving dish and refrigerate until serving time.

Preparation for Stone Crab Claws

  • Keep claws well iced at all times
  • Pre-crack the shell with a cracking tool or back of a knife
  • Place the claw on a clean damp cloth to stabilize it
  • Start with the first knuckle; give it a crack on the thick part, just enough to make an obvious split, but not to crush the shell. Repeat with second knuckle.
  • Crack main claw last. Keep intact and arrange over ice.

Serve with cocktail sauce, mustard sauce, and fresh lemon.

Cioppino (or “little soup”) was the quintessential San Francisco treat long before Rice-A-Roni claimed the moniker. During the nineteenth century, Italian Bay Area fishermen prepared the hearty seafood stew aboard their boats using favored ingredients like tomatoes and garlic as well as crab, fish, and clams from the day’s catch. In honor of stone crab season, Spoto’s Oyster Bar will enhance the traditional dish with stone crab, saffron, and a kick of cayenne pepper.

Stone Crab Cioppino (serves 6)

  • 3 tbsp. olive oil 
  • 1 small yellow onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 tsp. minced garlic
  • 1/2 tsp. fennel seeds
  • 1 large or 2 medium leeks, julienned into 2-inch strips
  • 1 pinch saffron threads
  • 1 28 oz. can of whole peeled tomatoes
  • 1/8 tsp. cayenne pepper
  • 1 cup dry sherry
  • 1 1/2 cups tomato juice
  • 12 oz. clam juice or clam broth
  • 6 clams, scrubbed
  • 6 mussels, scrubbed
  • 6 medium stone crab claws, meat removed
  • 12 oz. white fish such as mahi-mahi or swordfish, cut into 1-inch chunks
  • 6 oz. calamari or cooked octopus, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • Toasted bread slices

In a large soup pot, heat oil over medium heat. Add onion and cook until light golden, about 5 minutes. Add garlic, fennel seeds, leeks, and saffron and cook for 2 minutes. Stir in tomatoes and mash; bring to a boil. Add cayenne, sherry, tomato juice, and clam juice then return to a boil. Lower heat and simmer for 15 minutes. Add clams, reduce to a simmer, and then add remaining seafood. When shellfish opens, transfer to serving bowls. Cook fish for an additional 4 minutes, then ladle into center of each bowl. Serve with toasted bread.

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