Crabs and Oysters

a Savor the South cookbook

By Bill Smith

124 pp., 5.5 x 8.5, bibl., index

  • Paperback ISBN: 978-1-4696-7759-0
    Published: August 2023
  • Hardcover ISBN: 978-1-4696-2262-0
    Published: September 2015
  • E-book EPUB ISBN: 978-1-4696-2263-7
    Published: October 2015
  • E-book PDF ISBN: 979-8-8908-4569-6
    Published: October 2015

Savor the South Cookbooks

Buy this Book

To purchase online via an independent bookstore, visit
Crabs and oysters take center stage as Chef Bill Smith conveys his passion for preparing these sumptuous shellfish long associated with southern coastlines. Smith's sensibilities as a North Carolinian born and raised down east are vibrantly on display as he recalls the joy of growing up catching crabs and shucking oysters. Smith traveled the coastline, visited with crab fishermen and oyster farmers, and dove deep into a library's worth of regional cookbooks and collections of heirloom recipes from seaside communities, notably in North Carolina and Louisiana. His collection of fifty recipes, organized by courses, ranges from simple, everyday preparations to elaborate ones suitable for fancy parties. From Crabmeat Cobbler, Roasted Oysters, and Hard-Crab Stew with White Cornmeal Dumplings, to Crabmeat Ravigotte and Oyster Shortcake, cooks will find a succulent recipe for every occasion. The book includes seasonal selection information and detailed cleaning and preparation instructions for hard- and soft-shell crabs and oysters.

About the Author

Bill Smith is the author of two cookbooks and many articles and essays in various magazines and journals. In 2019 he retired after twenty-five years as head chef at Crook’s Corner Restaurant in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. He has received nominations several times from the James Beard Foundation for Best Chef Southeast and served for six years on the board of the Southern Foodways Alliance. In 2021 he received the Craig Claiborne Lifetime Achievement Award from that organization.
For more information about Bill Smith, visit the Author Page.


"A readable and intimate cookbook that doubles as a memoir."--Independent Weekly

"Bill Smith's dedication to the South's culture and foodways is exemplified in his treatment of the East Coast's abundance of delectable seafood. His respect for classics like Crab Cakes, Crabmeat Ravigotte, and Oyster Fritters is to be admired. His creativity sparkles and shines in dishes such as Oyster Shortcake and Crabmeat Cobbler. You'll want to have two copies of this collection of recipes--one to have on hand at your beach getaway and one for your home when you want to be reminded of leisurely summer meals of just-caught seafood."--Marcelle Bienvenu, author of Who’s Your Mama, Are You Catholic, and Can You Make a Roux?

"Packed with practical advice, interesting tips, and great recipes, this volume will appeal to crab and oyster lovers anywhere in the country."--Adrian Miller, author of Soul Food: The Surprising Story of an American Cuisine, One Plate at a Time and winner of the 2014 James Beard Foundation Book Award in Reference and Scholarship

"A delightful good read, full of extremely appealing recipes. Bill Smith's rich culinary knowledge of our beloved shellfish shows--and his book will be appreciated by readers around the entire South, and around the country."--Cynthia Graubart, coauthor of Mastering the Art of Southern Cooking

Multimedia & Links

Follow the author on Twitter @Chulegre.

Keep up with the Savor the South series on Facebook at

Listen: Bill Smith and Sandra Gutierrez talk to WUNC's The State of Things about their Savor the South&ref; cookbooks Crabs and Oysters and Beans and Field Peas and . (9/1/2015, running time 19:51)