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Tinned/Frozen Crab in the UK


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I'm unsure why it might be heresy. It's a lovely dish for which I usually use a fresh dressed crab. Our fishmonger also stocks frozen - dunno what brand as I've never bought it. As for tinned, Sainsbury's only stocks Prince's, which I've been known to buy for sandwiches buit I don't see why it wouldnt work with pasta.

John Hartley

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Espressoless and poorly worded on my part Harters, what I meant was that it might be considered heresy to use tinned crab for the dish. Worth using Prince's? I can give that a go.

I thought a smart ass marketeer may have bridged the gap between fresh and tinned. Soused perhaps? Thanks.

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No. Tinned crab tastes like cardboard. If you're that desperate for a quick fix maybe chuck in a dressed crab instead. It may be adulterated with mayo and other stuff but the brown meat will still pack more punch than tinned white.

I would even venture to say that good crab stix are better than tinned crab. I love the post Vici ones they have at Waitrose (although of course if you could get to a waitrose you'd probably be able to get fresh crab!)

J

More Cookbooks than Sense - my new Cookbook blog!
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Thanks Jon, I sort of suspected as much.

I think my local Waitrose only does dressed and M&S can provide 4 mini dressed crabs by preorder but as you say they may have additional ingredients.

What is a post Vici crab stick, does it actually contain any crab? Ah I know where I might be able to get fresh, my local Hoo Hing where they sell live lobster and eel but I've never attempted to undress a crab before.

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Oh, I'd certainly be interested in crab (fish?) stix that have crab in them. I confess to being quite partial to the cheap crappy ones you get in Sainsbury - a dunk in a lemony mayo improves them no end.

John Hartley

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I too am a lover of the crab flavour but forget tinned or frozen. The tinned is usually pasturized removing 90% of the taste and frozen often tastes strongly of chlorine ,that applies to all the brands I have sampled,get it fresh or leave alone is my advice.

Edited by Sidney (log)

Sid the Pig

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get it fresh or leave alone is my advice.

Seconded!

(as an Italian who got spoiled by fresh crab in Scotland, bought basically from the boat in my village harbour: there is just no comparison. But I strongly approve of pasta with it :smile: , and recommend tagliolini or linguine. )

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Thank you...aghh I'm back to square one then, unfortunately I don't live near a fishing boat or a good wet fish shop.

I made a ragu using cuttlefish instead, it was frozen but the flesh is very robust and doesn't degrade too much if careful defrosting.

My wife came back with some very nice dried linguine from M&S, never seen or used it before but it had very high protein content (14.8%) and nice flavour, will be buying that again. (~ £1.38 per 500g)

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Yes, it is heresy. I would go further and say that crab linguine is best with undercooked crabmeat. So i never make it with anything but live crabs. They're quite cheap live brown crabs, I bought 2 large ones yesterday for £13 in the Birmingham Indoor market. Gave them a scrub, killed them and boiled them for 10mins. The white meat made enough crab linguine to feed 4 of us handsomely last night and i'm still eating the brown meat on toast all through today.

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I made a ragu using cuttlefish instead, it was frozen but the flesh is very robust and doesn't degrade too much if careful defrosting.

My wife came back with some very nice dried linguine from M&S, never seen or used it before but it had very high protein content (14.8%) and nice flavour, will be buying that again. (~ £1.38 per 500g)

Cuttlefish ragout sounds nice! And that pasta has quite a lot of proteins indeed, is it their own brand or some other?

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Palate and taste preference are strange things , I think the taste and smell of fresh coriander is appalling, I think its use started in India to conceal the use of food going off in the hot climate.Back to subject, If unlike me you do not mind a hint of chlorine in your food i.e you like dishes with saffron in them, which to me always has the flavour of chlorine, try some frozen crab brands you might fnd them acceptable.

Sid the Pig

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I adore crab linguine as a quick evening dish, but of course buying, cooking and picking a couple of live crabs turns it into much more of an exercise. So I must admit to picking up fresh, pasteurised crab in the "Seafood and Eat it" range (available at Watrose). The best thing about this range is you can buy either all white crab, all brown crab or half and half. I find one pack of white and one pack of half-half is perfect for crab linguine for 2. It's obviously not as good as spankingly fresh crab but it's more than acceptable.

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Thanks nickloman if my local Waitrose stocks it that sounds like the perfect compromise.

Cuttlefish ragout sounds nice! And that pasta has quite a lot of proteins indeed, is it their own brand or some other?

You're right it's very high protein, in fact its the highest I've ever come across for egg less dried pasta which I always look for as fairly reliable indicator of quality.

It's sold as an own brand M&S product but in very small text it says on the packaging that it is "made and air dried in the Italian Alps by the Felicetti family, using select Italian wheat and bronze die..."

Seems like it has decent heritage, it's not exactly the same pasta but you get the picture.

http://www.dolceterr...ODUCT_ID=A00992

Edited by antdad (log)
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Thanks nickloman if my local Waitrose stocks it that sounds like the perfect compromise.

Cuttlefish ragout sounds nice! And that pasta has quite a lot of proteins indeed, is it their own brand or some other?

You're right it's very high protein, in fact its the highest I've ever come across for egg less dried pasta which I always look for as fairly reliable indicator of quality.

It's sold as an own brand M&S product but in very small text it says on the packaging that it is "made and air dried in the Italian Alps by the Felicetti family, using select Italian wheat and bronze die..."

Seems like it has decent heritage, it's not exactly the same pasta but you get the picture.

http://www.dolceterr...ODUCT_ID=A00992

I do indeed get the picture and am mightily impressed! Felicetti is one of the best artisan pasta producers in Italy. (Italians interested in food endlessly discuss which are the best pasta makers, and Felicetti is always mentioned. Haven't tried it myself, will be in M&S very soon...).

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Well bless my pasta e fagioli, I'm just glad my instincts for good mainstream "sleeper" products are intact.

I like to eat all cephalopods but cuttlefish has turned into a favorite, my recipe ingredients are simplicity itself.... olive oil, garlic, chilli flake, good tinned tomatoes + puree, capers, cuttle fish, parsley, seasoning. Sometimes white wine and a bit of paprika. I don't bother with onion because the flesh is essentially sweet.

I doubt I need to add any more instruction except cook till the cuttlefish is tender which may take longer than you think.

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Cuttlefish is very popular in Cyprus where, on the two occcasions I've eaten, it's been an unpleasantly chewy experience that I'm not keen to repeat.

Ha ha I also have had horrible experiences in Cyprus (also in Italy to be honest) with cuttlefish, and in fact with fish in general. Near where I was i settled on one humble Taverna (Laddas, on the coastal road between Limassol and Larnaca) and he grilled cuttlefish to perfection (some pics here).

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What is a post Vici crab stick, does it actually contain any crab? Ah I know where I might be able to get fresh, my local Hoo Hing where they sell live lobster and eel but I've never attempted to undress a crab before.

lol sorry meant posh vici crab stix. no they don't contain crab (only fishes) but the posh ones are quite tasty and made as quite passable imitations of snow crab legs: http://www.waitrose....ci surimi royal (as well as being inexpensive and presumably if made from fish healthy!)

What I would do is boil an artichoke and get a packet of crab stix and zap up a quick batch of aioli (egg + olive oil + garlic + stick blender) to dip. Perfect TV dinner (especially with olympics on!)

Edited by Jon Tseng (log)
More Cookbooks than Sense - my new Cookbook blog!
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