Spider crab is a really under-used and undervalued shellfish. Most of what's landed along our coasts gets sent to Spain where it's as highly valued as lobster. In the Basque country, baked in its shell in the oven, spider crab is a prized dish. Here, it's regarded as a pest and much of it is crushed up and thrown back into the water.
Only occasionally do spider crabs get cooked and eaten and enjoyed as they should be. Do try – it's great-tasting meat.
200-250g broad beans
2 small spring onions, trimmed and finely chopped
1 large, mild red chilli, trimmed and finely chopped
The juice of 1 lemon
3-4tbsp olive oil
1tbsp chopped dill or fennel tops
150-200g white spider crab meat, cooked and freshly picked by the fishmonger
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Cook the broad beans in boiling salted water for 2-3 minutes until tender then drain and refresh under cold water. Remove the skin from any large broad beans but leave the small ones as they are. Toss them in a bowl with all the other ingredients except the crab and season to taste.
Arrange the mixture on serving dishes and scatter over the crab meat.