The Ultimate Guide to Preparing and Cooking Dungeness Crab
Dungeness crab is a delicacy that is enjoyed by seafood lovers around the world. This sweet and succulent crab is found along the Pacific coast and is known for its meaty and flavorful flesh. However, preparing and cooking Dungeness crab can be intimidating for some. Fear not! With this ultimate guide, you'll learn everything you need to know to prepare and cook Dungeness crab like a pro.
Selecting and Storing:
When selecting Dungeness crab, look for crabs that are alive and active. If possible, avoid purchasing pre-cooked crab as it can affect the flavor and texture of the meat. Once you've selected your crab, store it in a cool and moist environment, such as a cooler with ice or a damp towel, until ready to cook.
Before cooking, it's important to clean the crab. Begin by removing the top shell and the gills (also known as "dead man's fingers") underneath. Next, remove the "crab butter," a yellow substance found in the body cavity, as it can cause the meat to taste bitter. Rinse the crab thoroughly and break it into sections, if desired.
There are several ways to cook Dungeness crab, including boiling, steaming, grilling, and baking. Boiling and steaming are the most common methods. To boil, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and add the crab. Cook for 10-12 minutes per pound of crab. To steam, place the crab in a steamer basket over boiling water and steam for 10-12 minutes per pound of crab.
Once cooked, remove the crab from the pot or steamer and let it cool slightly. Serve with melted butter, lemon wedges, and your favorite side dishes, such as garlic bread, roasted vegetables, or a salad. Dungeness crab also makes a great addition to seafood pasta dishes, risottos, and soups.
Dungeness crab is a delicious and flavorful seafood that can be prepared and cooked in a variety of ways. By selecting and storing the crab properly, cleaning it thoroughly, and cooking it using one of several methods, you can enjoy the sweet and succulent meat of this Pacific coast delicacy. So, the next time you're in the mood for crab, use this ultimate guide to prepare and cook Dungeness crab like a pro.