SOY MARINATED RAW CRABS

Gejang, the ultimate rice thief

It’s actually a saying in Korea because this stuff will have you eating bowls after bowls of rice. The sauce is so addictive and mixing some rice in the shell is to die for. Ganjang gejang is one of my favorite foods to eat especially in the summer when blue crabs are in season.

My mom was never a fan of making gejang because it was too much work, but it was actually relatively easy to put together! The hardest part of this dish is breaking down the crabs, but with a good pair of kitchen shears – it makes the process very simple.

The salt in the soy sauce denatures the protein in the crab, breaking it down and essentially “cooking” the flesh. A similar process happens when you add lemon or lime juice to fish to make ceviche. Freezing the crabs also make them safe to eat and it also puts them to sleep so you aren’t dodging claws while breaking them down.

 

Some tips from the kitchen:

  • Since I’m from the mid-Atlantic, live blue crabs are the best for us here. You can also use live flower crabs. Females are the best because they’re meatier and have eggs! Super tasty mixing the eggs in a bowl of rice.

  • If you’re a novice in a kitchen and feeling intimidated by breaking down live crabs – ask your fish butcher to do it for you! They should know how to break it down if you let them know you’re making raw marinated crabs.

  • Make sure to remove the innards of the crabs, but keep the mustard and the eggs! (Basically everything that’s yellow or orange in the crab)

  • A good pair of kitchen shears will make your life a lot easier for this dish. It’ll get into all the nooks and crannies and be able to cut off all the jagged edges.

  • The longer the crab sits in the brine, the saltier they will get. I keep it in the brine for 1-2 days and then remove it. Save some of the brine though so you can pour it onto your rice 🙂

 

Ingredients

  • 5 to 6 fresh live blue crabs (female, preferred)

  • 1 medium onion

  • 1 fuji apple

  • 5 garlic cloves

  • 1 inch knob ginger

  • 1 jalapeno

  • 2 pieces (2×4) dried kelp (dashima)

  • 2 cups soy sauce

  • 1/2 cup mirin or rice wine

  • 1/4 cup sugar

  • 6 cups water

 

Instructions

  1. Freeze your live blue crabs for at least 2 hours to put them to sleep. This will make it easier to handle and it’s also the most humane way to kill them.

  2. To a pot combine onions, apples, garlic, ginger, jalapeños, dried kelp, soy sauce, mirin, sugar, and water. Bring it up to a boil and simmer for 30 minutes. Strain and cool down to room temp.

  3. To clean the crabs, first remove the apron (flab on the back), separate the shell from the abdomen, cut off the eyes and antennae, and cut off any other sharp, jagged edges. Optional, you can also cut off the ends of the legs. There isn’t a lot of meat here and will help the brine penetrate the flesh.

  4. Scrub down the crabs to get any scum off them. Remove any innards, but make sure to keep the eggs and the mustard! (Basically keep everything that is yellow/orange)

  5. Transfer the crabs to a sterilized container and pour the brine on top. Make sure the crabs are fully submerged.

  6. Store it in the fridge for at least 24 hours before enjoying with a hot bowl of rice!

SOY MARINATED RAW CRABS

Course: Main Course, Side Dish
Cuisine: Asian, Korean

Ingredients

  • 5 to 6 fresh live blue crabs female, preferred
  • 1 medium onion
  • 1 fuji apple
  • 5 garlic cloves
  • 1 inch knob ginger
  • 1 jalapeno
  • 2 pieces 2×4 dried kelp (dashima)
  • 2 cups soy sauce
  • 1/2 cup mirin or rice wine
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 6 cups water

Instructions

  • Freeze your live blue crabs for at least 2 hours to put them to sleep. This will make it easier to handle and it’s also the most humane way to kill them.
  • To a pot combine onions, apples, garlic, ginger, jalapeños, dried kelp, soy sauce, mirin, sugar, and water. Bring it up to a boil and simmer for 30 minutes. Strain and cool down to room temp.
  • To clean the crabs, first remove the apron (flab on the back), separate the shell from the abdomen, cut off the eyes and antennae, and cut off any other sharp, jagged edges. Optional, you can also cut off the ends of the legs. There isn’t a lot of meat here and will help the brine penetrate the flesh.
  • Scrub down the crabs to get any scum off them. Remove any innards, but make sure to keep the eggs and the mustard! (Basically keep everything that is yellow/orange)
  • Transfer the crabs to a sterilized container and pour the brine on top. Make sure the crabs are fully submerged.
  • Store it in the fridge for at least 24 hours before enjoying with a hot bowl of rice!

Video

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