Crab’s Back on the Menu

“Have you gotten any crab yet this year?” It may be the neighborhood’s most-asked question. For everyone I’ve talked to (and asked the question) the answer is: no.

Friday, I hiked across the ridge and launched our canoe in the bay. My main errand was to take the canoe around to our property to patch its hull, but on the way, I stopped by our crab trap to check it. My reward: three large crab! This haul came a full 3 weeks earlier this year than last (see A Good Day to Dine).

We’ve had a lot of very sunny, very warm weather lately. By the time I landed on our beach near the top of the afternoon’s high tide, our entire compound had become shadowed by the ridge. Without the glaring sunshine, but with radiant warmth and the fragrance of spruce and alder buds, this may be my favorite time of summer’s day in Southeast Alaska, more so when I’m arriving home with a delicacy for dinner!

We cleaned the crab and steamed it in sea water (see A Better Way to Cook Crab). We made a green salad, poured a couple of glasses of wine, and settled down to the ultimate finger food: fresh dungeness crab ala “homestead.”

If it’s a good summer, we might actually grow tired of crab meat. If the season brings us enough crab, we’ll turn to various recipes to add variety to this free food source. But, there’s nothing quite like the first crab feast of the season, and no need to add anything to it!

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