Tuesday, 26 May 2009
While the idea of cooking live food might not be appealing to everyone, the assured freshness and uncompromised flavor that this option provides is amazing. The possibility of keeping something alive until right before you eat it is a limited one, but one area where it can be done rather easily is with seafood. There are plenty of restaurants that allow customers to pick their meal out of a tank in order to enjoy the freshest catch possible. Though some people might view this as a luxury option, having meals at home that feature items like live Dungeness crab are a real possibility.
If you choose to cook live crab there is a specific method of preparation you should use. Unless you are an avid crab eater it is unlikely that you have a well-aerated tank in your home that could keep the caught crab alive for weeks. In the absence of this tank it is important that you cook the live crab on the very day that you buy it to ensure optimum freshness. Boiling live crab is the only way to cook it. Using a large pot you should bring the water to a boil, adding half a cup of salt for every gallon of water in the pot. Cover the pot and let the crabs cook for ten to twenty minutes depending on their size. Placing the live Dungeness crab in the freezer for thirty minutes beforehand is a more humane way of boiling them since it tranquilizes them.
Once the meat is cooked you should either prepare it in a meal or freeze and store it. The cooked frozen meat will be good for at most four months afterwards. Freshly cooked crab should be stored at 32°F to make sure that the meat does not go bad, while frozen crabmeat should be kept at around -10°F. It is also important that the crab be cracked after it is done cooking, extracting only the meat, trying to leave as little as possible in the shell. Whether enjoying it right away or storing it for another day in the near future, cooking live Dungeness crab promises amazing meals for as long as the meat lasts.