Alaskan King Crab at Sun Sui Wah

It’s that time of year again, when the Alaskan King Crab turns up at the Sun Sui Wah Restau­rant on Main Street. It’s a com­bi­na­tion of spec­ta­cle and cui­sine that only lasts for a few weeks. This year, we got togeth­er with a bunch of friends and had one.

David wrestles the crab

I got my turn hold­ing him. I have to admit that for a moment it did remind me of one of the crea­tures from Alien. I always won­der who was the first per­son to try eat­ing what looks like an enor­mous insect. Nev­er mind, as you can see, all’s well that ends well (in our stom­achs, that is):

Cooked Crab. Very Yummy.

Thanks to Irma Cho for these fun photos.

5 Replies to “Alaskan King Crab at Sun Sui Wah”

  1. Wow.…I had no idea that they were that big! I have only had the legs before and they were small­er than that. So do you need a group of peo­ple to do this? What is the sauce on the crab? I read some­where else that this was the time for Alaskan King Crab but did­n’t know the whole rit­u­al. Do tell more?

  2. Hi MJ —

    I think you could get away with a crab for 1 per­son, but it is a lot of meat, to be sure, although you have to work to get it out of those legs. For 4 peo­ple it might be more rea­son­able. For our table it was a nice first course, and the noo­dles helped to make it more substantial.

    The sauce is a sort of cream sauce (a bit like Fet­tuc­cine Alfre­do with­out the cheese), flavoured light­ly with gin­ger and a hint of sesame oil. I saw oth­er crabs served with­out the sauce; I think they were steamed with gar­lic. Sun Sui Wah spe­cial­izes in this dish, and I thought the sauce was just light enough, even if it did make for pret­ty messy eating.

    As for rit­u­al, it’s pret­ty much the bring­ing out of the crab by the wait­er, and the chance for many to get their pic­ture tak­en hold­ing it like I did. They are real­ly impos­ing, since they are still mov­ing around (although not as dan­ger­ous­ly as a lob­ster with pincers).

  3. YUM YUM YUM!!
    I was just think­ing how cool this is and still think­ing how cool it was to read about Antar­ti­ca and it occurs to me that I’ve nev­er asso­ci­at­ed any crus­taceans with the south­ern cold places…there must be some?

  4. Hi Bethany!
    I asked Pam if there was any­thing they ate out of the Drake Pas­sage and she said that although there were things on menu of the ship that said ‘Argen­tin­ian style’ or ‘Chilean’, she did­n’t eat any­thing that was par­tic­u­lar­ly caught there, nor did she ‘throw any lines over the side to catch any­thing’. She did notice one fish­ing boat in Argen­tin­ian waters (at night). It was like a fac­to­ry ship, with pro­cess­ing machin­ery and lights as they worked, so there must be some sort of fish in those cold south­ern seas. There’s still lots of krill, which is what the pen­guins, seals and whales all eat.

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