Live Dungeness Crab
A meaty crustacean, Dungeness Crabs are found in North America, and prefer sandy, muddy bottoms.
TASTING NOTES FROM THE CURATOR
The Dungeness Crab is found in the water bottoms and eelgrass beds of North America. Its name is pronounced “DUHN-juh-nes,” and they have a wide and long hard shell with an earthy color and bluish/purplish tints. Their body meat is tender, and their leg meat is firm. Their flavor is briny and mild, with sweet and slightly nutty notes.
PREPARATION AND PAIRINGS
Dungeness crabs are great steamed, boiled, baked, or cooked in curry or stews. You can also use the meat for sandwiches or dips. A great (and classic!) recipe is garlic butter crabs—instant crowd-pleaser!
- Cut the top of a whole garlic head and place it in a small baking pan. Drizzle some olive oil on it, and cover with foil. Roast it for 50-60 minutes in an oven at 350F. Set aside once done.
- Boil your live Dungeness crabs in boiling water for about a minute to kill them. Once partially cooked, remove and drain. Separate and cut your crabs into big pieces.
- Melt some butter in a skillet, then saute minced garlic (NOT the one you roasted) for about 2 minutes on low heat. Don’t let it brown.
- Add in ground black pepper, chicken bouillon powder, and sugar. Let cook for 1 minute.
- Add in your Dungeness crabs, and mix until completely coated in sauce.
- Transfer the crabs into a baking pan, and pour the sauce all over the crab meat. Separate your roasted garlic and spread it over the crabs.
- Bake in an oven at 350F for 25-30 minutes.
- Serve with lemon. Enjoy!
AN IMPORTANT STATE CRAB
Dungeness crabs are named after the port of Dungeness, a small fishing village in Washington state, in the United States of America. It’s been commercially harvested since the 1800s, both for consumption and for sport.
It was named the “state crustacean” of Oregon in 2009, after schoolchildren from Sunset Primary School in Oregon lobbied for it, for its importance to the state’s economy.
For longer storage, place the box container, with all its contents intact, inside your refrigerator or cooler at (1- 4 C) Fresh water will kill the crabs immediately so avoid washing them. The Live King Cab can be kept alive for 48 more hours if stored properly but it is recommended you cook and consume them immediately to ensure the best taste.