Crabs are among the most succulent and delicious seafood eaten today. Whole crabs, crab legs, crab cakes, alaskan crabs, stone crabs, and even other tiny crabs are served across the nation. Some like it with sauce, others are contented to steam it and pick the meat out. More adventurous people would include crabs in soups, salads, and even sandwiches. Crab cakes and crab fritters are also popular choices. Crabs are even included in pasta sauces and omelettes.
But before making crab dishes it is necessary to get really good crabs and crab meat. It doesn't matter if you're going to prepare whole crabs, crab legs, crab cakes, alaskan crabs, stone crabs, or some tiny crab, they key here is freshness. It is better and advised that you get live crabs. Pick crabs that are lively or aggressive. Sick or dead crabs would only ruin your dish and could even be a cause of sickness. Also, crabs are sold by bushels. Insists to inspect or choose your own crabs before putting them in bushels. To ensure freshness, befriend your fish person and ask them to keep you informed when the next batch of crabs would be in. Fresh crabs taste juicier and more succulent than stale crabs.
Now that you have your crabs, it is important to remember some guidelines in preparing them. You would not want to waste quality crabs by careless cooking, would you? It doesn't matter if you want to cook crabs, crab legs, crab cakes, alaskan crabs, stone crabs, or some tiny crab dish, cook your crabs as soon as you got them. I assure you they'll taste better than if cooked on a later time. For steaming, get a wide rack and steaming pot so you can steam the all crabs at once. This way, crabs are steamed evenly and you can prevent earlier steamed crabs from cooling. Make sure that your rack has enough height for your crabs to stay well above the steaming liquid, too short racks will give you boiled crabs instead of steamed. Another trick is to add beer to your boiling liquid, it will give your crabs outstanding flavor.
Crab cakes are trickier. It is important to control your seasonings so as not to overpower the subtle flavor of the crab. Avoid over-frying or your crab cake will dry out. The color of stone crab claws and most crabs will change to a bright shade of orange when cooked. Do not overcook your crabs, as soon as they signal you with their color change, remove them from direct heat. When your crabs are cooked, keep your sauces or condiments to a minimum, after all, it is the crabs that should be the star of your meal. Call your friends and family to share your crab feast. But on the other hand, they'll taste so good you might want to enjoy them by yourself.
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