Crab Info

Crabs are probably the most popular crustacean in the dinner table. They are succulent and delicious but don't cost an arm and a leg like lobsters. These shelled delicacies are found and eaten worldwide with distinct taste and preparation, depending on the locale. But because of their intimidating appearance, most people are wary of buying and preparing these tasty crustaceans at home. It's a pity because these crustaceans are very versatile. Whether steamed whole, made into sandwiches, boiled in soups, or fried like crab cakes, these shelled goodies never fail to satisfy.

To ease this intimidation, it helps to know important facts about this particular seafood. These crustaceans are decapods with bodies made up of carapace or hard shell. These hard shells are their exoskeletons. These crustaceans shed their shells regularly through a process called moulting. The moulting process defines the difference between soft shells and hard shells. For example, Alaskan crabs are big but if caught in the early moulting stage, their shells are brittle and soft. Hard shells are developed as the new shells mature.

It is very important to buy live, fresh crustaceans. Buying them dead can cause poisoning and other digestive problems. Choosing fresh crustaceans means looking for signs of life. Aggressive and active crabs are preferable over those who can't even crawl. Intact crab legs are also indications of health. This means that the shelled critters were not handled roughly.

Cooking them is also a very easy process. Even cooking weird-looking claws of stone crabs is a cinch. Just steam, pick out the meat, add lots of butter, and a dash of lime juice. This technique also applies to whole critters. As soon as the critters change their color into bright orange, take them out of your steamer. This steam and butter method applies to all species of this succulent seafood, but not recommended to the little ones. A small crab like a blue crab is better if it is deep-fried. This makes for a crunch shell and juicy meat inside.

Crabs are special delicacies. But what makes them special is not their price tag. They are special because they require effort to buy and prepare. The people who will partake of your crab feast won't mind if they got a big or small crab. It won't matter if you serve crab sandwiches or crab cakes. The effort you put into cooking them will make the critters taste as best as can be.

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