Preparation / Directions:
1. Turn the crab upside down. Pull away and discard the apron.
2. Pry off the top shell, or carapace. Pull off and discard the feathery gills. Scoop out and discard the viscera, then lightly rinse the body before continuing.
3. Remove the legs by bending back at the joint with the body. Separate the claw portion from the leg at the first joint.
4. Bend back and remove the smaller claw pincer, along with the attached claw cartilage; this helps keep the claw meat intact.
5. Using the back of a chef's knife, gently rap the claw shell first near the pincer end, then near the broad end. You can also use a crab mallet, but be sure not to smash the shell and meat.
6. Pick away the shell and remove the meat.
7. Using kitchen shears, snip through the shell on either side of each leg portion. Pull away half of the shell and remove the meat with a pick or a small fork.
8. Split the body in half with a heavy knife. Pick meat out of the cavities, taking care to discard the fine white shell