New and Improved New England Crabby Melts

New and Improved New England Crabby Melts
  • 4Servings


  • 3 jarred roasted red peppers, drained
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 teaspoon hot sauce (eyeball it)
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil (EVOO), eyeball it
  • 12 ounces fresh lump crabmeat (from the seafood counter)
  • 2 teaspoons seafood seasoning, such as Old Bay
  • 2 celery ribs from the heart, finely chopped
  • 2 sprigs of tarragon, leaves stripped from stems and chopped
  • 3 scallions, finely chopped
  • 4 sandwich-size English muffins, split
  • Unsalted butter, softened, for buttering
  • 2 cups watercress, chopped
  • 2 cups shredded Gruyere cheese (about 8 ounces)


Place the peppers in the bowl of a food processor and season with salt and pepper. Add the lemon juice and hot sauce, then put the lid in place and turn on the processor. Add the EVOO in a thin stream and process until smooth.

Preheat the broiler. Using your fingers, check the crabmeat for pieces of shell. In a medium bowl, combine the crab and seafood seasoning. Add the celery, tarragon and scallions to the crab and toss with the red pepper dressing; adjust the seasoning to taste.

Toast the English muffins under the hot broiler, then lightly butter them. Top each with a small handful of watercress, then with a scoop of the crab salad. Pat down the salad a bit, then top with a handful of cheese and return to the broiler to melt the cheese, about 1 to 2 minutes. Remove and serve immediately.