The Moleche, also known as Masanete, are Venetian lagoon's soft crabs in moult: in other words, caught between April and May, or in autumn, between October and November, when they lose the carapace and look soft and tender. The Moleche are now presided over by Slowfood (organization founded by Carlo Petrini in Italy to combat fast food, which claims to preserve the cultural cuisine and the associated food plants and seeds, domestic animals, and farming within an eco-region).


  • 700 gr moleche
  • 2 eggs
  • white flour as needed
  • seed oil
  • salt to taste


Wash the Moleche. In a small mixing bowl, beat the eggs with a pinch of salt, then immerse the Moleche while still alive and cover with a dish. After about two hours, take out the Moleche, cut the end of the legs and flour them. Pre-heat the seed oil to 350 to 375 degrees F in a deep, heavy saucepan or a deep-fat fryer. Drop the Moleche into the oil and fry until golden brown. Drain them on paper towels, season with salt and serve them straight away with some polenta (thick maize porridge).

This dish will be just perfect if accompanied by a good white wine, like Muller Thurgau... buon appetito!

Been there? Done that? Share your experience and tips!

Haven't visited yet? Have questions about Fried Moleche? Ask them here!