Thursday, March 1, 2012

Crab Louis with Sauce Louis

Dungeness crab season in Oregon starts around the first of December and runs all the way through mid-August.  At my house the first crabs of the season get eaten straight out of the shell (caveman style) with the option of drawn butter (which really isn't necessary), because the crab is so naturally sweet and tender, it really needs nothing more.

After the crab feed, which is AWESOME!  I make a batch of crab cakes and the infamous Crab Louis Salad.

Crab Louis is a traditional old school salad that never gets old for me.  But it’s not the salad that impresses me the most (even though the crab is pretty impressive), it’s the dressing.
What this dressing lacks in LOOK's, It makes up for in FLAVOR!
We eat first with our eyes, so the salad has to be pretty.  But without the homemade Louis dressing, it’s just another salad. 

You can get a beautifully assembled crab Louis at almost any good seafood restaurant, but it’s not authentic without the dressing.

I know that I am repeating myself about the dressing but it makes all the difference.

When I see a crab Louis on a menu I get so excited and immediately want to order it.  Imagining the mound of fresh sweet Dungeness crab, crunchy cucumbers, sweet tomatoes, black olives, creamy avocado and hard cooked eggs stacked on a bed of crisp lettuce.

Then "POOF", the excitement disipates when the waiter quickly burst my bubble and asks me, "What kind of dressing do you want with your salad"?  (Duh, Louis Dressing?), and what makes it even more painful is when he cluelessly continues to recite every dressing on earth except Louis...

Everyone has an opinion about what you need to stack on a Crab Louis.  I like mine simple.  You can dress up your salad mix or add more toppings, but be sure to serve it with Sauce Louis.  My Louis dressing has more in it than most, but worth every addition.
Chili Sauce is a universal word these days (American, Thai, Mexican, Sriracha, Rooster, What?).  So when I list chili sauce in a recipe I think it might need a bit of clarification.  So here is a photo of the bottle 

Dungeness Crab Meat
Iceberg Lettuce
Black Olives
Hard Cooked Eggs

2              cups                       mayonnaise
¼             cup                         ketchup
¼             cup                         chili sauce
2              Tbsp.                     fresh lemon juice
1              Tbsp.                     Worcestershire
¼             cup                         sweet relish
½             tsp.                        kosher salt
2              large                      eggs, hard boiled and chopped
2              oz.                          black olives, chopped or (16 large pitted)
1              sprig                      green onion, minced
1              clove                     garlic, minced
1              small                      stalk celery with leafy top, minced

The fastest and easiest way to make the dressing is in a food processor using the metal blade.  The only things that will need minor cutting will be the green onions and celery, and they only need to be cut into about 2 inch lengths, so they fit in the bowl.
1.       Pulse whole garlic and celery until minced.
2.       Add green onions, black olives and eggs.  Pulse to chop but don’t puree.
3.       Add all other ingredients and blend to mix.
If you don’t have a food processor, just chop as listed and mix everything together.


  1. Thanks for sharing! It looks so good!

  2. This is one of the better Louie dressings I've had! The only change I made was leaving out the sweet relish since we're not big fans. Thank you for this one!