Boiling – The Devil’s Oven

Crabs were another part of my growing up. Sadly not a coital side effect but part of plunder down in Mandurah with the Blue Manna crab which roved around the estuary. I think then the limits were a plastic rubbish bin per boat and more often than not, we got that. The crabs were then boiled and then eaten with vinegar and newspaper. Simple pleasures but could have been more pleasurable had we done it simpler still – the naked flame.

I first had crabs on the BBQ in Wakanai. Wakanai is right on the tip of Hokkaido and we stopped there living every Japanese biker’s dream – the Summer tour of Hokkaido. The set-up was pretty simple – a bunch of BBQs near the harbour and you bought fresh seafood and BBQed it there. I can’t remember the crabs themselves as we had a stack of great seafood thanks to friendly locals. Yesterday at the Innaloo fish markets this memory was twigged and I bought a few fresh Garden Island Blue Swimmer crabs.

Cleaning is pretty easy. There’s a side argument in the argument to design based around the utility of the world for people – fish swimming close to the beach, apples in reach etc. which is supposed to prove an intelligent creator. Much bagged, of course, but if it ever has any hope then it has to be in the convenient underside tab of crabs which you peel back to take it’s top off. It’s like fish having zips or turkeys having breadcrumbs and sage for innards.

Once the crabs were cleaned I took of the claws and chopped the body down the middle. From here I heated up the grill bit on the BBQ and then just chucked the crabs on. They took about 10 minutes to cook, a bit hard to judge but the few on the side of caution didn’t suffer too much from being a little overcooked and undercooked crab is vile. The only garnish was to squeeze a lemon over them half way through cooking.

The taste was fantastic. The crab meat was sweet to the point where I could taste hints of honey. Better than crayfish.