Friday, November 27, 2015

Seasoned White Crabs 2 Ways (raw and lightly sauteed)

Located at the deli counter at Foodland (grocery store) on the island of Maui there is a huge selection of fresh and delicious poke (seasoned raw seafood). One type is white crab poke. I ate some directly from the deli and find it too salty. The ingredients for the crab poke consists of sectioned crab body with some legs, sambal (chili pepper), kim chee mixture, nuts and sesame oil. These crabs remind me of the salted raw tiny crabs found in the southern part of Vietnam especially in Soctrang and Chau Doc known as "ba khia". I like to eat the raw crabs but I prefer to add a few extra ingredients such as a sprinkle of raw sugar and a squeeze of lime juice. Once these 2 ingredients are mixed in the crabs the taste is more balanced and is 'ono' (that's tasty in Hawaiian). By the way this is how ba khia is also eaten by some people in Vietnam!

ba khia or Khmer salted crab
(Chau Doc, Vietnam)
Another way to eat these seasoned crabs is to lightly sauté them. I discovered this by accident. I had some crabs left over in the refrigerator from a previous day. I prefer to eat raw seafood same day or not at all since the freshness is gone and there is a higher risk for bacteria growth. Instead of discarding perfectly good crabs I add the seasoned crabs (straight from the store) with a sprinkle of raw sugar (for a pound of the crab poke I used about 1 teaspoon of sugar) and sauté with a little hot oil. Adjust the sweetness to your taste. I remove the crabs once they are just cooked. These crabs are tasty with plain rice. 

white crab poke with sugar and lime
lightly sautéed white crabs

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