Cooking the Gem of the Pacific Northwest: Red Rock Crab — Deep Dive

(gentle music) – Try to be careful ’cause these things pretend to stay still and
they pinch really hard. It’s definitely a funny
characteristic of this crab is that it’s pretty pissed
off all the time. (chuckles) We have two specimens of red rock crab. These are both harvested
in Netarts Bay, Oregon by Captain Kristen Penner. She’s associated with Blue Siren Shellfish of the fishing vessel, Storm Trooper. So these are caught in Dungeness crab pots during bay season only. These are a bi-catch ingredient
of Dungeness crab fishing. Some locals on the coast will eat these, but as far as sport and commercial goes, these are literally an untouched species. They’re just a little bit harder to pick the meat out of the shell, which is the only thing I can think of as to why they’re not targeted. This crab meat has like
a tropical flavor to it, almost like a citrus flavor. It tastes like it was dressed
with grapefruit juice. It’s one of the most exotic tasting seafoods we’ve had anywhere. – It’s so nice to have
a chef that’s willing to use what other people would
just discard and throw away. – For instance, we were fishing
for Dungeness crab today, and the red rock crab came up in our gear. There’s a lot of traditional
recipes that call for them, so. – In Japan, they have 50
different kinds of crabs you can find at the live seafood market, and here, you know, we
just kind of stick to the ones that we know work. We also just didn’t really
use Dungeness crab at all before even though it’s available. We haven’t really used it on the menu until these specific ones became available just because the story
behind it really helps. That was what Kristen
first showed us about them that was so cool was that, yeah, there’s less meat, but there’s still quite
a bit on most of them. And what ends up happening is that seawater can get in the shell and it kind of brines the meat, so the meat is way more
tender and more flavorful. – They both have sweet meat, but I feel like the texture of the meat is slightly different too. I think it’s brinier, and just bitter. – The red rocks?
– Yeah, the red rocks. They come up in the pots and
they’re like glowing jewels. They are just the most
stunning. (chuckles) (gentle violin music) – So this is a male crab here. Really similar to stone crab is that you can see the claws are almost the size of the
rest of the entire body. There’s a wide flap on
the bottom of the female, and a narrow one on
the bottom of the male. Typically, all of these female crabs are filled with roe this time of year. We’ll steam these for about 12 minutes, chill them down, pick the claw meat out, and then we take the
roe from the female crab and make a sauce out of it, and then that will just get spooned right over the
crab meat, that’s it. It’s very simple. (gentle music) So, here we have the
crabs that are cooked. We just start by removing all the legs and claws. The prize of this crab is
the roe from the females. So, we’re gonna remove the flap. The body is removed from the shell. It comes right out like that. And then inside here, you can sort of just start
to pull everything away and you can see the roe right in there. This sort of follows the
shape of the shell as well. So there, it comes out just like that, and then we leave this juice inside here, ’cause that will also be
used to make the roe sauce. Then you have your crab roe, the body of the crab, flap, legs, claws. Super umami crab flavor this roe has, and you can kind of see
when you clean it off that beautiful like coral,
bright orange color. And then the next step after this is that we would peel these claws. It’s pretty difficult to crack, so we take a little rubber mallet and then crack it really lightly, then you can peel the shell away. So the male crabs, as you can see, have much larger claws than the female. So, this is where we get
the majority of our meat. I should remove those
claws, just like before. And as you can see, just the
size difference between the two is pretty massive. Even the male crabs have these little what they call are crab
guts, the crab brains, is that most flavorful part of the crab. There’s no real research done on how old these crabs are, and because these aren’t
commercially harvested, there can be some down
there that have been living for a very long time. As opposed to Dungeness crab, it’s healthy fishery
but it’s rotated a lot. On this crab you can
really tell the age of it. I mean, that takes a very long time for barnacles to grow
on something like that. This is a Dungeness crab. The whole body will come right out. That’s also the amazing
thing about these crabs is just the amount of juice
that comes out of them. I mean that right there, you can just drink that out of the shell. It’s like amazing. Yeah, it’s epic. So because it’s a new
shell, the shell is softer, so it just twists off like this. You can just eat the crab. These are amazing. They’re also really
preferred by locals because you can just mow right through it. You just eat a whole pile of crabs without having to do really
very much work at all. God, he’s gotta try this. – [Producer] Sure. – We’re a little bit biased here in Oregon about Dungeness crab, but, it’s kind of hard to find
anything that beats that. (energetic music) – This is a standby for us, the pie crust. We really like making tiny food, it’s one of the fun things about working in a tasting menu format. So, we’re making our
red rock crab pie here. That just starts with a simple
pate brisee, or pie crust. We kind of underwork it and then fold it onto itself a few times, so that creates this
kind of like puff pastry or croissant-like texture. We just cut out rounds of the pastry so that we have a nice even shape. (energetic music) So these are our pie weights. We just use these to hold down the crust as it bakes so
that it holds it’s shape. It’s called blind-baking sometimes, and then we remove those partway through the baking process so that they can finish cooking through. – So this is the crab roe. So this is just the innards from the crab and the roe that have just
been blended together. We’re gonna mix it with some egg yolk and whisk it over a double boiler. We’re gonna season this with a little bit of the garum that we make from mackerel. Let it slowly warm up, and then we’ll continue
to stir it more and more as it starts to thicken when it warms up. Crab roe is like a major delicacy. You usually just don’t see
it in the United States because it’s illegal in certain fisheries to keep the female crabs. If these were to be kind
of a commercial fishery for longterm sustainability reasons, we would not harvest the female crabs. So as you can see, that
just thicken right up. It lands to a really nice creamy texture, similar to a Hollandaise, except that we’re not having to add any fat to this to thicken it, so we have that pure flavor from the crab roe sauce. We have all the components here together for our red rock crab tart. This is the meat from the
claws that we picked out. It has a lot of flavor on it’s own, but we season it really lightly with a little bit of lemon and some finishing olive oil, and then also some of that same garum that we used to season the roe sauce, sort of just reinforce that flavor. A little bit of our roe sauce. It’s not the most efficient process. I think for us, it’s a lot more important to be sourcing these native ingredients. We’re all about the quality of them. You know, it’s worth it. (energetic music)

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100 thoughts on “Cooking the Gem of the Pacific Northwest: Red Rock Crab — Deep Dive

  1. I have crabbed for 28 years recreationally in Oregon. Virtually none of the facts presented in this video are accurate. For example, the comparison of crab claws between male and female – males are slightly bigger but that's a regular male claw compared to a gimpy claw from another crab. Also, due to domoic acid concentrations, the state of Oregon strongly suggests NOT eating the liver – all that yellow stuff, inside the boiled crab. And, arguing that people would just "throw away" red rock crabs in Oregon isn't accurate. They would put them back in the water if they didn't want them. Also, red rock crabs are not nearly as exotic as they are made out to be in this video. Red rocks are a "loser" crab when you can't catch any dungeness crabs. Early on in my crabbing career, we caught a lot of them. I love crab but red rock crabs don't hold a candle to Dungeness crab, regardless of how much ridiculous sauce you put on them.

  2. I live right on the water literally a football field away and my neighbors/cousins have their own personal beach in the northwest we live on an island. My goal is to get some nice crab this year

  3. The crabs were kidnapped abducted , dumped in boxes with other crabs and then killed by boiling them in water…

    Yummy.. tho..

  4. Those are s.all red rock I get them 6 -7 inches of jetty in canda then again we have limits for red rock and only can keep males

  5. That's tillamook bay not netarts at least in the video. Also all the juice and yellow stuff in the crab isn't recommended to be eaten due to toxins.

  6. I am lucky enough to live in the Pacific Northwest so in my younger days was able to catch these on a regular basis. I much prefer them to Dungeness. Actually in flavor it is better than snow, king or even blue. Now that I am an invalid I can't go out after them so wish they were available commercially because I really do miss them!

  7. So basically these guys add a bs story to the food that the customer reay doesn't care about so they can sell you a crab for the prince of wagyu…genius

  8. I live in British Columbia Canada and my uncle has a place on an island with a dock to catch these I put any kind of meat like fish guts I’ve even used hotdogs and I drop it off the dock they are extremely easy to catch I just check it every 15 mins and it’s shallow enough that I can see it and they are delicious

  9. Wouldn't you be pissed off too if you were taken out of your home and just sit watching your friends and fam boil till it's your turn??

  10. These crabs are like.. damn these Fu©kers found us!
    Of course they're gonna be pissed off and want to pinch your ass, you decided after thousands of years 'oh, maybe we can eat these.' Lmao.
    This is the before video. The, before these creatures used to thrive, but then they were hunted to Extinction, video. lol.

  11. Being a year round crab fisherman, that Dungeness crab was about the lowest grade crab you can get, white Dungeness crab mean it's soft and soft crab mean no meat. Great video though I'll give you that

  12. What if a female crab identifies as a Male crab and you complain about the claw size would that be considered sexist and would you be called out as a toxic masculinity man?

  13. I live in small province here in the Philippines and locals here claim that foreigners from the US and canada love the quality of our seafood and they dont have anything close to it. But when i visited LA the seafood there was 3x better than what we have in our town 😆. Perhaps foreigners are just too polite.

  14. The yellow stuff inside the carapice is not roe. It's just digestive matter from what the crab eats.

    Crabs carry their eggs, or roe, outside the body.

  15. You can catch Dungeness crab off the pier in Prince Rupert, if you’re willing to haul up 169 ft of wet rope & a crab trap.

  16. Excellent process and well executed. Enjoyed watching every minute and would love to try all of these amazing selections of crab dishes in Oregon one day. I really liked how there was no waste and how the rare Red Rock crab was respected amongst the crew. Thank you for sharing!

  17. Okay first off, they were standing in the Port of Garibaldi, Or that goes into the TILLAMOOK Bay. Netarts Bay is about 20 minutes south.

  18. 5:22 Kind of hard to find anything that beats that… Red Rock beats Dungeoness easily.. better than both IMO is the Pacific Box Crab (aka Puget Sound king crab). in 50 years of crabbing of the coast of Vancouver Island BC, I have caught 6 Box crab, all have been between 8 and 10 inches across the back.

  19. What's really good is when people express themselves with the lowest "vocal fry" register of their voice as fast as possible, preferably so fast that the words kind of slur into one and there are no distinct consonants, it's so modern. I love the little packets of quickspeak with inordinate pauses.

  20. Never eat anything sea foodie except for cod and prepackaged shrimps …..having lobsters is definitely on my bucket list also going on holiday that's not in the UK would be sound….

  21. Natural sea salt brine of a red rock crab…sounds amazing. Would LOVE to try this. Big fan of this channel btw.

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