Crab Casserole Calamity

 Having Roger Mudd and his wife for dinner was the impetus for Eudora Welty’s baking of the crab casserole.

Eudora’s preference was no guests in the kitchen and so she left the dinner table to retrieve the casserole from the oven.

The guests in the dining room heard a loud crash and Mr. Mudd came to the rescue,

clearing the broken pyrex and delicious crab from the kitchen floor.

With the kitchen cleaned the party continued,

saltines and bourbon standing in for the crab casserole…

crab casserole

Eudora received a thank you note from the Mudds requesting the recipe for her crab casserole so that they could actually have a taste.

She replied including her recipe with instructions at the bottom

” remove casserole from oven and drop to floor – serves 0″

Here is an old crab casserole recipe I found in my recipe box ( I am saying that it is old based simply on the fact that it calls for yellow food coloring!)…

Crab Casserole

Makes 4 servings
2 celery ribs, chopped fine
1 medium bell pepper, chopped fine
1 medium onion, chopped fine
Butter or nonstick spray for sauteing
6 cups evaporated milk
3 cups chicken or shrimp stock
2 to 3 tablespoons flour paste (see note)
Salt to taste
Few drops yellow food coloring (optional)
1 tablespoon chopped pimento
1/4 cup real sherry, not cooking sherry
1 pound claw crab meat
Grated sharp cheddar cheese as needed for garnish
Pimento strips for garnish

Saute celery, peppers and onions in butter or oil spray until soft. Set aside. In a separate pot, combine evaporated milk and chicken or shrimp stock. Bring to a simmer, almost to the boiling point, stirring often. Add the reserved vegetables. Add 2 to 3 tablespoons of flour paste. (Note: flour paste is made from 1 part flour to 2 parts cold water or stock mixed together.) Cook mixture until slightly thickened.

Add salt to taste and the yellow food coloring, if using. Stir in chopped pimento. Add sherry and stir well. Remove the pot from the heat and let mixture cool to set somewhat.

Divide crabmeat as desired into individual dishes or ramekins, about 6 to 8 ounces in size. Pour milk mixture over crab. Top with sharp cheddar cheese and pimento for garnish.

crab casserole

Using the ramekins might help out with not dropping it to the floor!
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