Chinese mitten crabs are a type of river crabs, native to Southeast Asia from southern China, mainly found along China's long coastline from the Liao River basin to the Pearl River basin. The best time to these crabs is from September to November each year.
There are also many types of Chinese mitten crabs depending on the area in which they are farmed: such as Gucheng Lake crabs, Yangcheng Lake crabs, Hongze Lake crabs, etc. Due to the unique local climate of the Yangcheng Lake, the long-term average surface water temperature stays around 16.1 ℃, making Yangcheng Lake an ideal place for Chinese mitten crabs to live and prosper; therefore, crabs farmed and produced in the Yangcheng Lake are of premium quality.
What else can you do to help choose the best Chinese mitten crabs?
First and foremost, check the color of the crabs, for the color of the crab should be blue on the back, white on the belly, and gold on the claws; secondly, the individual should be large, agile and active; and thirdly, crabs with the belly button protruding slightly outward are tastier.
The flesh of male and female crabs is also very different from each other. Male crabs have a thick layer of crab paste, which is translucent when steamed and has a very sweet taste. Female crabs, on the other hand, have a layer of orange-colored crab yolk, which is rich in nutritional value and has a rich egg yolk flavor.
It's also easy to distinguish between male and female crabs at the market. The lid on the male crab's abdomen has a pointed triangular shape, while the lid on the female crab's abdomen is more oval.
According to archaeological research, China has been dining Chinese mitten crabs for more than 5,000 years. In ancient times, refined scholars enjoyed eating Chinese mitten crabs while drinking wine and composing poetry. Plus, they had a particular way of having Chinese mitten crabs. Since Chinese mitten crabs have a hard shell and some parts of the meat are hard to taste, people invented a special tool for eating crabs, called the "eight pieces of crab". This set of tools allows you to eat Chinese mitten crabs cleanly, and some people even use the crab shell to put back together a whole Chinese mitten crabs and pose it in various ways, creating a food culture among young people.
Finally, NHC would like to remind you that although October presents a good time for fans of Chinese mitten crabs to have their long awaited crabs, you should eat Chinese mitten crabs in moderation, preferably no more than two per day, otherwise it will easily cause indigestion and other symptoms.