In a large pot, heat 2 inches of oil to 375 degrees F.
In a bowl, combine the flour, 1 teaspoon of the Essence, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/8 teaspoon cayenne. In another bowl, combine the cornmeal, 1 teaspoon of the Essence, and remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/8 teaspoon cayenne.
In a small bowl, beat the eggs, water, and remaining teaspoon of Essence. One at a time, lightly coat the crabs with the flour mixture, then dip into the egg wash, followed by the cornmeal to coat.
With tongs, lower 2 crabs at a time into the hot oil. Fry, turning once, until golden and crisp, 3 to 4 minutes. Drain on paper towels and season lightly with Essence.
Spread both sides of the French bread with tartar sauce. Layer the lettuce, tomatoes and pickles over the bottom half of the bread and top with 1 crab. Close the sandwiches and serve immediately.
Yield: 4 sandwiches