- 3/4 cup bleached all-purpose flour
- 3/4 cup vegetable oil
- 1 1/2 cups chopped yellow onions
- 1/2 cup seeded and chopped green bell peppers
- 1/2 cup chopped celery
- 1/2 cup chopped carrots
- 4 bay leaves
- 2 1/2 teaspoons salt
- 1/2 teaspoon cayenne
- 6 gumbo crabs, each cut in 1/2, about 1 pound
- 1 cup peeled, seeded, and chopped fresh or canned tomatoes
- 1/2 cup brandy
- 8 cups water
- 1 teaspoon liquid crab boil (recommended: Zatarain's Concentrated Liquid Shrimp and Crab Boil), optional
- 1/2 cup chopped green onions, green parts only
- 1/4 cup finely chopped fresh parsley leaves
- 1/4 cup heavy cream
- 1 pound lump crabmeat, picked over for shells and cartilage
- Crab Toasts 
Combine the flour and oil in a large nonstick saucepan and whisk until smooth. Over medium heat, stir constantly until the mixture is the color of peanut butter, about 10 minutes. Add the onions, bell peppers, celery, carrots, bay leaves, salt, and cayenne. Cook, stirring often, until the vegetables are soft, about 10 minutes.
Add the crabs and tomatoes and stir to mix. Cook for 10 minutes. Add the brandy, water, and crab boil. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer, uncovered, for 1 hour and 45 minutes.
Add the green onions and parsley. Remove the bay leaves. Remove from the heat and add the cream. Mix to blend. Ladle into individual serving bowls and sprinkle each with 1/4 cup crabmeat. Top each with a half crab and a crab toast.