Measure 5½" - 6"
Handling & Preparation
Hard shell crabs have been steamed with seasoning, then chilled. Refrigerate crabs immediately upon receipt. They may be enjoyed cold, at room temperature or heated.
Place a raised rack in the bottom of a large pan (minimum of 2 inches), try not to let the crabs touch the water. Add equal quantities of water, vinegar & beer to just below level of rack. Layer crabs; sprinkle each layer with mixture of crab seasoning and salt. Cover and steam for 6-8 minutes. Although they are seasoned before they are shipped, additional seasoning will add flavor. Be careful not to steam too long as the meat will dry out. There is no appreciable loss of quality from re-steaming.
Steam live crabs for 25-30 min. using the same process. Try not to get bitten!
Ordering Steamed vs. Live Crabs:
We do our best to ensure that every crab is alive upon delivery. Normal mortality rates usually does not exceed 15%. Extra crabs are usually packed to compensate for normal mortality rates. Count live ones instead of dead ones when assessing your order. Unfortunately, we can't control the shipping environment and in rare instances mortality rates may be higher due to weather conditions or handling by the courier. We strongly recommend ordering steamed crabs to be sure that every crab is edible upon arrival.
How many crabs will you need?
If you are just serving crabs, a good rule of thumb is about 8-12 crabs per person. If you are serving other food, we estimate about a 1/2 dozen crabs per person. To put it in short, a bushel of large crabs will feed approx. 8 people. Remember, these are estimates only.
Stir-Fried Crabs Cantonese Style
- 8 live blue crabs
- 3 tablespoons liquid oil
- 2 to 3 cloves garlic, chopped
- 6 to 8 spring onions, chopped
- 1 tablespoon fresh ginger root, chopped
- 1 tablespoon fermented salted black beans, mashed
- 1 cup chicken stock
- 1 to 500 red peppers (depending on how hot you like your food)
Kill the crabs with an ice pick or by dropping in boiling water. Remove the legs, top shell, internal organs and discard. Break the remaining body in half (it is traditional to leave the backfin attached). Heat a wok or skillet to high heat and add the oil. Stir fry the crab body halves and claws for 4 to 5 minutes until claws are bright red. Add garlic, onions, ginger root, red peppers and black beans; stir fry another 1 to 2 minutes. Add chicken stock and reduce heat. Cover and cook for about 10 minutes. Uncover an increase heat to reduce sauce. Stir frequently until done. Serves 2 to 4.
The black beans are an essential ingredient; they give the dish its unique flavor. These beans are sold in small bottles in the Chinese markets and last indefinitely without refrigeration. They are very strong in flavor, so be careful not to add too many. Mash them with a spoon before adding to the dish.