Crabs are one of the most delicious things you could eat, but they can be tricky to cook! Here we share a step-by-step guide on how to cook a crab.
Like all seafood, quality counts when choosing your crab, so pay a visit to your favourite fishmonger or fish market to select the best crustacean. Different crabs are suited to different dishes: giant mud crabs are great for curries and stir-fries, delicate blue swimmer crabs are better for salads and light starters, and spanner crab is delicious tossed through pasta or noodles.
Steam or boil your crab in a large pot – around 7 minutes for every 500 grams should do the trick. The crab’s shell should change to a bright orange colour. Rinse your crab under cold running water, then allow it to cool completely.
Turn the crab upside down so the undercarriage is facing you. Insert your thumb at the base of the apron (flap), then lift it up and remove it.
Hold the crab firmly with one hand, then remove and discard the top shell. If desired, remove and save any roe (or mustard) to mix through dressings or rice.
Remove and discard the spongy, feathery gills from either side of the body – also known as ‘dead man’s fingers’, these tough, fibrous parts are inedible.
Rinse the crab under cold running water.
Using a kitchen clever, cut the crab into segments, then you’re ready to stir-fry it, pick out the meat or serve in its shell with your favourite dressing. Be sure to give your guests nutcrackers and a skewer so they can scoop out all of the lovely crabmeat.
Once you’ve mastered the art of preparing a whole crab, why not try making a Thai crab curry.
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