Forum

Start new topic
page 1/2 go to

Preparing Signal Crayfish

jeff
by jeff
Moving on from the catching of Signal Crays, I have heard people mention that you should not eat them for the 48hours after you catch them, can anyone add any weight to this story? Apparently they taste better if they haven't fed for 2 days?

I am due out on a conservation trip with my brother along with some chaps from the Lea Valley regional park to look for Viviparous Lizards in May and wanted to catch a few Crays for lunch but hearing this makes me wonder if a rethink is due...???
Must get more foodie things done!
last edited on
Oneforthepot
#1
by Oneforthepot
I cook mine straight off - I get back from fishing and get the pan boiling. The crayfish go straight in in batches of ten for four minutes. Once cool enough to handle I start by removing the claws, then the head. Next to come off is the tail um fluke or whatever it's called.

Next remove the meat from the tail and - this is the important bit, remove the intestine - you can slit along the back or pull off the sort of flap of flesh that covers it. The intestine is just a blackish tube, if you tear it simply rinse of the junk under the tap.

Now head to the claws, snap off the smaller section by bending it back, smack the main body of the claw with a mallet, stone, whatever, remove the meat and remove the shard of hard stuff that resides in the middle.

Takes me about 3 hours to do a days fishing worth.

The only benefit of starving them for 48h is you don't have to remove the intestine. I regularly catch them and grill them on the river bank with a little charcoal brazier I've made for the purpose. For grilling I spike them, remove the head etc etc and just cook the tail with the shell on. Claws get dropped onto the charcoal untiul steam comes out of the top.

Incidentaly spiking doesn't seem to kill them, slicing a severed crayfish head in half doesn't even have much effect.

I've no idea if the coral is edible, I've always assumed not
Oneforthepot
jeff
#2
by jeff
Cheers Geez,

Did wonder if it was just a digestion thing to starve them first... THe digestion track is the same as removing it from a prawn from the sounds of it so that's not a problem... I want to have a boil up on the bank on the day on my little gas stove, looking forward to it!!!
Must get more foodie things done!
dougal
#3
by dougal
Jeff, is that the Lea Valley, East London? Personally, I wouldn't be brave enough to eat anything out of there... I'm thinking "industrial", "pollution", "heavy metals", etc
I'd guess that in polluted waters, their meat would accumulate the nasties, (nevermind whats in the digestive tract), especially if the crays are eating other things that have themselves accumulated pollutants. In Minemata (sp?), Japan, IIRC the mercury was first accumulated in mussels, which were eaten by something, which was then eaten by Tuna, which the people made the mistake of eating...
And it seems these ruddy crays will eat anything and everything thats convenient...
westbay
#4
by westbay
Caught hundreds of crays last year, but after all the messing around, cooking cleaning, de-veining etc I found them a bit lacking in the old taste department. I bit like hoping for lobster and getting soggy blotting-paper.
jeff
#5
by jeff
Dougal,

Same River Lea but much futher up into Hertfordshire where it is a great deal cleaner!!!

Westbay,

I am suprized that you say this about their flavour, I have mainly had glowing reports regarding their taste... How did you cook them? I know that you can easily over-cook small crustatians such as Longestean (spelling?) etc and their flavour can quickly deteriate...

Cheers,
Jeff
Must get more foodie things done!
Behemoth
#6
by Behemoth
Browsing through cable last night I stopped on 'Screaming Reels' where they were catching lbs and lbs of crayfish in the Serpentine where they are a pest. they took them up to Billinsgate and sold them. They probably belong to the Queen though so I wouldn't...
Erikht
#7
by Erikht
The coral is not only edible, it's the best part of any crustatians. I don't think crayfish build up toxins the same way as mollusks.
Oneforthepot
#8
by Oneforthepot
I've always found the flavour of them great , it is milder than their marine counterparts, probably due to the lesser salt content but I'll happily eat them plain boiled or curried or anything.

I'll give the coral a try this season, I'm not fond of it as is ( in fact I hate scallop corals ) but it would go nicely in a batch of potted crayfish.

Oneforthepot
nordicknight
#9
by nordicknight
And, fer gods sake, the only thing to go into the water with the crayfish is salt, white pepper and tons n tons of fresh dill..

jeff
#10
by jeff
Prefer good old fashioned curly Parsley myself
Must get more foodie things done!
page 1/2 go to
To leave a response to the post you will need to be a registered user. Sign-up here or Login here
@rivercottage
  • Have you cast your vote yet for the @SoilAssociation #OrganicAwards? You could win a hamper of organic goodies! link
  • @makingmewonder Sounds like you are enjoying #lightandeasy :o)
  • RT @makingmewonder: Simply divine Chicken with Lentils & Rosemary from the fantastic new @rivercottage book this evening. Thai Slow-cooked …
  • RT @IanGJones: @RiverCottageHQ can't tell you how much I enjoyed my day today @lambposts was brilliant as always - everyone should go at le…
  • For more details about #cookeveryday read on here: link
  • Oct is #cookeveryday month! From Weds we'll be asking you to get involved with a different theme each day. Who's in? link
  • RT @SoilAssociation: We’re delighted to be working with @LPQUK to #KeepBritainBuzzing. Find out why #bees are in decline link
  • When does a soup become a drink, FoodTubers? Hugh explains all in his latest exclusive video: link
  • Today Hugh rustles up his light and easy bloody beetroot soup, exclusively for #FoodTube. link
  • Be as fair as you think you are. Join the @FairtradeUK Great British Fairness Debate at link #befair
  • RT @RiverCottageHQ: The judging continues at our #MacmillanCoffeeMorning - very tense scenes here with @thepamthejam @GillMeller http://t.c…
  • RT @RiverCottageHQ: Who needs Berry + Hollywood when you have @thepamthejam + @GillMeller to judge cake! #macmillancoffee @BritishBakeOff h…
  • RT @RiverCottageHQ: Our efforts for #MacmillanCoffee - get the kettle on! Proud to raise money for @macmillancancer link
  • RT @PigBusiness: Help us stop the development of Foston's #FactoryFarm! We need your support to stop #FactoryFarming in the #UK http://t.co…
  • Our @WinCanteen is officially open. Book your table now! #winchester link link
  • RT @plymouthcanteen: Hugh is here chatting to our Chefs. He will be signing his new book at 2.30, pop down & get a copy! @RiverCottageHQ ht…
  • RT @PlymUni: Watch a short interview with @rivercottage Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall Honorary Doctorate of Business #PlymGrad : link
  • Making bread can be complicated and time consuming - Hugh’s carrot cornbread for #FoodTube is neither link
  • RT @TelegraphFood: 'Squirrel's long been on my menu', says Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall of @rivercottage link link
  • THIS LUNCHTIME! Hugh rustles up his deliciously moist and golden carrot cornbread, exclusively for #Food Tube! link
  • . @recycle_now We have a top tip, don't waste lemon rinds + other peelings - you can make a delicious jelly! link
  • RT @RCChefsSchool: Great to hear @BBCr4today promote #apprenticeships today. You can earn while you learn at River Cottage: link
  • NEW AND EXCLUSIVE! Hugh cooks morning tea slices from his new book, Light & Easy: link #FoodTube
  • COMING TODAY! Hugh makes scrumptious fruity bars, great with your morning cuppa, exclusively for #FoodTube link
  • RT @RiverCottageHQ: Transform your early #autumn bounty into jams, jellies, fruit leathers, curds and cheeses with @thepamthejam and Liz. h…
  • RT @laurajknight: Still full from a fantastic pre-opening taster lunch @rivercottage Winchester! Lovely food in a beautiful setting.
  • RT @RCHQGardens: Some lovely big fat #sloes in Devon right now. We've got the gin at the ready! link
  • RT @WinCanteen: Here is a peek of our lovely new bar area, the perfect place for a cocktail after a hard days work, see you there! http://t…
  • RT @RiverCottageHQ: We only have 5 tickets left for our Evening with Mary King MBE. Quick, don't miss out! #maryking #horsehour http://t.c…
  • Today @GillMeller is entertaining the visitors at the @edenproject, as part of their Harvest celebrations link
  • RT @RiverCottageHQ: Spotted a #mushroom and want to know whether it is edible or not? You need @johnmushroom's foraging course! http://t.co…
  • RT @mcsuk: #30species Help create a better future for our iconic marine creatures. Find out more link link
  • RT @freefromfairy: Trying a cracker recipe from Light and Easy the new book by Hugh FW. All recipes #wheat and #dairyfree! @rivercottage ht…
  • Thanks, John. All ideas, always welcomed! RT @jiholland111: @rivercottage #foodtube is such a great initiative!
  • WATCH! Here’s Hugh’s very quick and easy, dairy-free alternative to smoked mackerel pâté for #FoodTube! link
  • Coming up today, Hugh cooks a scrummy smoked mackerel tartare, exclusively for River Cottage #Foodube link
  • RT @RCHQGardens: This week we will mainly be picking apples, raspberries, tomatoes and courgettes. #grow #organic #seasonal
  • RT @KEOfilms: We're making short films about private healthcare. If you're interested in FREE consultation & treatment click here > http://…
  • @Kristen_Hodgson and what will be whipping up first? #lightandeasy
  • @DianneMower go on... :o) #lightandeasy
  • @HDDJones Let's ask @BloomsburyCooks... #lightandeasy
  • RT @RCHQGardens: We've just released more dates for our Get Growing course with head gardener, Will Livingstone. Grab a ticket now! http://…
  • RT @DianneMower: @rivercottage Loved it! My message is ALL about real food - simply made. Your book does that beautifully.
  • @DianneMower Ah, shucks. You've made our afternoon :o)
  • @DianneMower Hooray! So glad you like #lightandeasy
  • RT @DianneMower: @rivercottage Latest book may well become the most recommended to my clients. Deliciously healthy, easy wheat AND dairy fr…
  • RT @Kristen_Hodgson: @rivercottage I received the newest edition to my, oh so sweet collection of 'River Cottage' cookbooks today! http://t…
  • RT @BloomsburyCooks: We're at @afoodfestival this weekend with Hugh FW, @lambposts, @Claire_Clark, @marcusverberne and @sebemina - see you …
  • RT @RCHQEvents: Got a soggy bottom problem? We can help with our Savoury Pastry and Pies courses! link #GBBO
  • RT @RCHQEvents: Work for us! We're looking for a Sales & Marketing Assistant. Do you fit the bill?link
Login or Sign-up

Login & Sign-up

Forgotten your password? Retrieve it here
Or connect via Facebook
Connect with Facebook
Join River Cottage
Close
Shopping basket: 0 items £0.00