The really BIG crabs
Just when the salmon season ends at the coast, everyone gets ready for crabs. At this time of year getting crabby is a good thing. Here in Quirkutopia we don’t have those dainty little blue crabs they have in the Atlantic, no, we have Dungeness crabs – the giants. The average weight of a legal sized crab is two pounds or over. And sometimes they are three pounds. That’s a serious crab.
At the ports you see large round crab pots everywhere and everyone is busy painting their identity buoys to mark their pots. The pots are laid in “strings” in a line to make them easier to fish. Some strings are 100 to 150 pots long. The baited pots are left for a few days then emptied. The legal male crabs are put into an aerated tank on board for delivery.
The season opens close to San Francisco Bay just before Thanksgiving unless there is a “tie-up” over prices. It’s tradition that the buyers and fishermen haggle and sometime it gets serious enough that the opening is delayed.
How do you eat the luscious things? Same way you do the little blue ones – steam or boil them, melt some butter, squeeze some lemon. Pour some chardonnay or a fruity pinot noir, set out a loaf of sour dough bread and you have a feast fit for a king and definitely too good for a Congressman!