Crab is essential for winter seafood recipes. Everyone agrees that crab is the king of winter flavors. Aren’t you filled with anticipation when you think of hot pot or kani suki (crab hot pot) on a cold winter’s day?


Nijiya Sticks to Raw Crab!

Crab in American stores is usually cooked or boiled, but Nijiya purchases raw crab not only to keep the original flavor but also to give our customers greater freedom of preparation. Crab is a seasonal food and, usually, frozen raw food has to be special-ordered before the start of the fishing season. Nijiya has its own purchase route, through which we place special orders every year. The most delicious crab of the season comes to us directly from the processing plant.

Jumbo Snow Crab

Snow crab, together with king crab, is one of the most popular crab varieties. The crab that is branded and sold as Matsuba Crab or Echizen Crab in Japan belongs to the snow crab species. The jumbo snow crab, from the Valdai species, is also called “phantom crab” because it’s very precious and rarely seen in the general market due to catch restrictions and a limited production area. It is said that snow crab can be found only at a few high-class Japanese-style restaurants in Japan due to its rarity and value.

Characterized by thick legs, jumbo snow crab meat is plump and fresh! The more you chew it, the more flavor you’ll get.

Red King Crab

As the name suggests, red king crab wears the crown.
With the plumpest legs full of meat, the crab tastes sweet, rich, and juicy. Once you get to know the flavor, you will definitely be obsessed with it.

How to Choose Good Crab

Because we eat only the interior of the crab but not the shell, it isn’t easy to choose a good one based on external appearance. Here we’ll give you some tips on how to identify a crab that will taste great.

1) The color of the shell

If the crab shell looks somewhat transparent, it’s likely that the crab molted recently and doesn’t have enough meat inside. It is said that a crab with a yellowish or cream-colored shell contains plenty of meat. On the contrary, it is said that uneven coloration on the shell is likely to be caused by gaps in the meat.

2) Heaviness

If the crab is solid, firm, and heavy, it holds plenty of juicy meat.

Nutrition Value

Crab contains an abundance of flavorful extracts. Glutamic acid, glycine, and other amino acids contribute to the unique flavor. Crab contains betaine and homalin, which have remarkable rejuvenation effects on the human body. They help in the production of cells, hormones, and enzymes.

Moreover, crab has more protein but fewer calories compared to other sea delicacies and contain 15% to 20% of high-quality protein. Eating crab is good for weight control, because it is low in fat and sugar. A carotene pigment called astaxanthin, which has a strong antioxidant effect, turns the crab red when placed in boiling water. It is said that the human body converts carotene to vitamin A, which slows the aging process.

How to Cook Kani (crab)

Snow Crab Cream Tomato Pasta Recipe

Snow Crab Cream Tomato Pasta

Ingredients (Serves 2)

  • 7 oz. pasta
  • 7 oz (approx. half a 14.5 oz. can) diced tomato
  • 1 hot red pepper
  • 2 Tbsp. heavy whipped cream
  • Dashes of salt & pepper
  • 8 pieces snow crab meat
  • 1 clove garlic, crushed
  • 1 Tbsp. white wine
  • 2 tsp. olive oil
  • Dash of Parsley

Cooking Directions

  1. Put olive oil, garlic, and red pepper in a pan over low heat. When you can smell the pepper, remove it.
  2. Cut the crab legs into easy-to-handle lengths, and place in a pan with the wine. Cook over medium heat with lid on for about 5 minutes. Add the diced tomatoes and lower heat to simmer and start boiling the pasta.
  3. Remove from heat and add the cream to the sauce. Add salt and pepper to taste. Top the pasta with the sauce and a sprinkling of parsley.

Kani Nabe (Crab Hot Pot) Recipe

Kani Nabe

Ingredients (Serves 4)

  • 1 lb. 12 oz. crab
  • 6 leaves nappa cabbage
  • 1 green Onion
  • 1 pack Eringi
  • 1 pack Tofu
  • 1 shungiku
  • 8 shiitake
  • 5 Tbsp. miso
  • 3 Tbsp. soy sauce
  • 22 oz. soup stock/dashi
  • 2 Tbsp. mirin
  • 1.7 oz. sake

Cooking Directions

  1. Cut the crab diagonally into pieces that will fit into the pot.
  2. Cut the mushrooms and other ingredients into bite-size pieces.
  3. Put miso, mirin, soy sauce, sake, dashi in another pot. Bring to a boil and add the other ingredients, adding the crab last.

Crab Rice Recipe

Crab Rice


For dashi (broth):

  • Crab shells: saved from crab used in recipe
  • 2-inch piece of kombu

For the rice cooker:

  • 2 cups uncooked Rice
  • 1 Tbsp. sake
  • 2 Tbsp. soy sauce
  • Crab meat, desired amount
  • 1 Tbsp. mirin
  • 1/3 tsp. salt

Cooking Directions

  1. For the dashi:
    Put the crab shells and enough water to cover in a pot. Cook over medium heat to a point below boiling. Skim the broth to clarify. Lower heat to simmer to create broth. Place kombu in the broth and let rest for several hours in the refrigerator.
  2. For the rice:
    Put all the rice cooker ingredients into the rice cooker. Instead of plain water, use the broth from Step 1 to fill the rice cooker to the cooking line. Cook the rice as usual. When cooking is done, mix immediately.
    *You could also add shimeji, enoki, or kinoko*

Kani Tama Recipe

Kani Tama


For dashi (broth):

  • 6 eggs
  • 2 shiitake
  • 4 Tbsp. canned peas
  • Dashes of soy sauce, pepper, and salt
  • 3 1/2 oz. crab meat
  • 1/2 green onion
  • Cooking oil, as needed

For the sweet and sour sauce (Amazu-An):

  • Soup (6.8 oz. hot water and 2 tsp. granulated Chinese soup stock)
  • 1 Tbsp. soy sauce
  • 1 Tbsp. rice vinegar
  • 2 Tbsp. potato starch (dissolved in water)
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp. sugar
  • Dash of pepper

Cooking Directions

  1. Shred the shiitake, and cut the green onion diagonally.
  2. Make the sweet and sour sauce (Amazu-An). Place the ingredients (except for the starch) for the sweet and sour sauce in a pot, and heat. Add the starch after the mixture is heated.
  3. Heat the oil in a pot, saute the shiitake and green onions. Season with soy sauce and pepper. When cooled, add the peas, salt, and crab meat. Pour in the eggs.
  4. Heat oil in a pot. Add the mixture of Step 3 and stir as it cooks thoroughly.
  5. Put the mixture on a plate, and pour the sweet and sour sauce (Amazu-An) on top.

Gochiso Magazine, Nijiya Market

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