For live crabs allow 10 minutes per 500g to cook. Steam or boil
in salted water.
How to humanely kill a
Crab for cooking:
It is recommended that all crustaceans are immersed in a
salt water/ice slurry for a minimum of 20 minutes before
boiling, broiling, pithing or cutting. This ensures the
animal is immobilised before procedures that may cause pain
are carried out.
The salt water/ice slurry is made by first filling a
suitable container (such as an esky) with normal crushed
ice, then adding salt water (sea water salinity). The ratio
of normal ice to salt water should be 3:1, which will give
the consistency of wet concrete and a temperature of –1°C.
It is important that enough ice is provided to maintain the
temperature of the slurry.
Crabs should feel heavy for their size and have their legs
and claws intact. Blue Swimmer Crabs are one of the few
Crabs not sold live, but are available cooked or green
(uncooked), as they don’t survive well once captured. Look
for brightly coloured, firm, intact, lustrous shells,
without any discolouration, particularly at joints, and a
pleasant fresh sea smell. If possible, give them a gentle
shake to ensure there’s no sound of sloshing water. Females
with eggs are protected in all states, and in Queensland
catching any female Blue Swimmer Crabs is prohibited.
Wrap in plastic wrap or foil and store in an airtight
container in the fridge for up to 3 days, or freeze for up
to 3 months below -18ºC. Picked crabmeat can be stored in
the same way.
The male’s shell is a distinctive mottled bright blue to
purple when uncooked, while the female’s tends to be more
mottled brown; like all crustaceans, they turn orange when
cooked (with the male's shell remaining brighter). Average
yield is 35% (from claws and body). The flesh is translucent
when raw and white when cooked, it has a mild, sweet, nutty
flavour, low oiliness and is moist, evenly textured and firm
(claw meat is firmer than that found in body and legs). Some
people enjoy the stronger-tasting ‘mustard’ or brown meat
(internal organs) in the body.
Steam, poach, deep-fry, pan-fry, stir-fry. Serve boiled Crab
with Asian dipping sauces such as nam pla, or mayonnaise (flavoured
with 'mustard', garlic, or herbs) or hot melted butter with
a squeeze of lemon juice. Do not recook cooked Crabs, pick
out the meat and use it in salads, sandwiches, as a garnish
for soups, or in dishes where it is just gently warmed, such
as pasta, risotto, Crab cakes and omelettes.
For every 100 grams raw product
for Blue Swimmer Crab meat.
22% of total
20% of total
57% of total
How to prepare a
Blue Swimmer Crab for cooking
Sydney Fish Market takes you through how to clean and
prepare a Blue Swimmer Crab for cooking