As far back as I can remember, my family always loved this recipe.  I was told that Mr. Bill Bayley of the famous Bayley’s Restaurant at Bayley’s Corner on Dauphin Island Parkway south of Mobile, Alabama concocted the recipe.  If you like crabmeat from Blue Crabs, this “is to die for”!

I have two requests for the best results on this fabulous recipe:
Do not make any substitutions, and follow the directions exactly.
I agree with you that lump crabmeat is “pricey”, but it is oh-so-worth-it for this recipe!
Do not ask me why, but the ice water makes a difference!

1 lb. fresh lump crabmeat
4 oz. vegetable or canola oil
4 oz. ice water
3 oz. cider vinegar
1 medium mild onion, chopped very fine
Freshly ground black pepper



In a glass bowl, lightly toss the crabmeat, oil, ice water, vinegar, and onion until well-mixed, taking care not to break the crabmeat lumps.  Salt and pepper to taste.  Cover the bowl tightly, and marinate for several hours, or overnight in the refrigerator. Stir occasionally.  To serve, use small glass bowls, compotes, sherry or martini glasses, etc.  When spooning the salad into the individual serving dishes, be sure to add a small amount of the marinade.  Keep the West Indies Salad refrigerated until serving time.  Serves 4 – 6.

One night on vacation at the beach, I had a triple treat.  West Indies Salad, fresh-caught Red Snapper, and the opportunity to sleep under the stars to the sound of the pounding surf.  Kim and Almand Westbrook bought some of the largest fresh lump crabmeat that I have seen in quite a while.  Their request was for West Indies Salad.   The second treat came from my cousin’s good-looking new husband, Stan Sharp.  He is an expert fisherman.  He caught huge red snappers in the Gulf of Mexico; then, cleaned, filleted, and iced-down the red snapper for us to enjoy.  And, enjoy we did !!!  Stan, you Are-the-Fishin’ Man.  So thanks to Kim, Almand, & Stan, we had a real seafood feast.  

For years I have wanted to spend the night outside on the deck at the beach.  But, it was either too hot, no breeze, flying insects, raining, or ???   But, tonight, I had found the perfect night & the perfect place.  Our house was on the Gulf, and one of the decks was large and uncovered.  The stars were magnificent as was the steady breeze, and the roar of the surf.   Thankfully, we had not seen a flying insect the entire week!  No more whining, I did it.  I rummaged around in a closet for a lightweight blanket, found a couple of lounge chair cushions, put my Thermorest sleeping pad on top of the cushions, and added my own down sleeping pillow.  If I had been more comfortable, I would have been dead!  I had just settled in to watching the stars and waiting for the moon to make it’s evening arrival, when a door opened onto the deck.  I thought it was Joe deciding to join me after all; but it was my daughter, Genia.  She had her lounge chair, pillow, and blanket with the same idea of spending the night outside on the deck!   She had no clue that I was already there.   So, mother and daughter, with their like-minds, were star and moon watchers until the sounds of the surf and sleep overcame us.  Guess we are both slightly crazy, but it was truly a glorious night to behold and remember.  


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