Lights Out For Crabs

One of the toughest parts about cooking is knowing that sometimes the slightest mistake in time or preparation can compromise the quality of the meal completely. While it is best to keep this crippling fear as far out of one’s mind as possible, it is important to remember to take any and all precautions beforehand to so that a dish is not ruined by a silly mistake due to lack of knowledge. Preparation and gathering knowledge depends very heavily on what you choose to cook. One food that it is very important to understand its preparation requirements is crab. When choosing to prepare crab a person must be sure they know just how to cook crabs.

The first important distinction to make before teaching someone the proper method of cooking crabs is what kind of crab they will be using, frozen or live. For those who choose to buy pre-cooked frozen crab the process is quite easy, though rather time consuming. To defrost a whole crab simply place it in the refrigerator and allow it to sit for about ten to twelve hours. After the defrosting period you can choose whatever method of cooking you see fit. Knowing the proper way to defrost frozen crab is an important part of knowing how to cook crabs.

If the crabs are live you have two methods of cooking them. The first is steaming them. To steam the crabs you need a large pot filled with one cup vinegar, two cups of beer or water, and two tablespoons of salt, making three to four inches of liquid. As you bring this mixture to a quick boil place the live crabs in the freezer for three minutes in order to stun them before placing them in the boiling liquid. When the liquid is at an intense boil place the crabs on a steaming rack a good distance above the liquid, season them as you like and place the lid on the pot. The crabs will be done cooking in about twenty minutes at which point you should remove them, rinse them under cold water and serve them hot. This is just one method of how to cook crabs.

If you wish to boil live crabs then you will need to pour five liters of water into a large saucepan as well as roughly five tablespoons of sea salt, bringing the whole mixture to a quick boil. Grab the live crabs by their back legs and drop them into the water headfirst. Bring the water back to a boil and allow them to cook for fifteen to twenty minutes depending on the size of the crabs, bringing the water to a simmer. When the shells have turned bright orange remove them from the pot and put them in cold water for a few seconds and serve them hot with melted butter. This is yet another method for how to cook crabs, with styles of preparation as diverse as the kinds of crab being cooked.


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