Rinse crabs and dry with paper towel. Cut each crab into four parts. Toss crabs very lightly in seasoned flour. Melt butter in heavy skillet; when hot, put in crabs, shell side down. Reduce heat and saute crabs until brown. Turn crabs and brown on other side. When brown all over, remove to hot platter and keep warm.
Add 1 tablespoon of finely chopped onion and parsley to butter remaining in the skillet. Add 1/2 cup absinthe and simmer for 5 minutes. Have ready the yolks of three eggs beaten together with 1/2 cup of cream. Add this to absinthe broth, being careful not to let the broth boil after the egg mixture has been added. Salt and pepper to taste.
To serve, place tomato slices on toasted bread round, top with 1/4 piece of softshell crab, spoon over absinthe sauce and sprinkle with chopped pecans and cayenne pepper. Yields 16 hors d'oeuvres or 4 main course meals.
» Chef Joseph Green was a double winner in the third annual crab cooking olympics in San Francisco. We saw the article and treasure this recipe.