HOW TO PICK & PREPARE CRAB
Join Marine Scientist Kimber Anderson as she visits her local grocery store to show you how to pick and prepare blue crab from Texas.
WITH CRAB, IT ALL BOILS DOWN TO THE SHELL
The best part about blue crab is that it’s sold in both hard-shell and soft-shell forms. Crabs must shed their shells to grow, so soft-shells are just blue crabs that have recently molted. These “softies” are harvested before they can regrow a new shell, so their skin is soft. No matter which style you crave, one thing is for sure: blue crab meat is delicious, low in fat and a great source of protein.
HARD-SHELL CRABS ARE COOKED LIVE
Boiled or steamed, you have to use a mallet and crab crackers to get the meat out of hard-shell crabs. Boiling allows the crab’s shell to really soak in the seasoning—in other words, more flavor locks into the meat. Steaming allows the crab to cook faster and more efficiently without having to worry about water logging or running the risk of overcooking. With either method, you’ll discover tender, flaky, and delicate meat encased in an orange-red shell when cooked.
SOFT-SHELL CRABS ARE OFTEN FRIED
Entirely edible whole, legs and all, soft-shell crabs have a delightfully crunchy texture. These are adult crabs that have molted within the last twelve hours. When it comes to traditional cooking methods, they’re typically fried and enjoyed in a sandwich. So if you’re not ready to claw your way through a thick shell, soft-shell crabs are a delicious option and typically in season from early March to late September.