Spider Crab – no longer just for export!
Our Shellfish Promotional Project continues apace! Having firmly established a network of chef ambassadors who are keen to promote all species of our native crustaceans and molluscs, we have identified 5 species, that although almost exclusively exported, we believe should be used as iconic representatives for the shellfish consumer to embrace and enjoy, right here in the UK – just as they might abroad on holiday……
Our Famous Five are:
Brown (Hen) crab
Of course there are a plethora of other species that we aim to showcase too, including mussels, oysters, lobsters, brown shrimps, scallops and cockles, but for now our focus is on these five delicious and incredibly underrated species that seem to leave our shores by the ‘000 of tonnes annually.
We’re incredibly fortunate that our shallow seas, harbour some of the finest shellfish available and so commencing our journey of ‘sea to plate’ traceability, we met last month down in Newlyn with Cyrus Todiwala OBE DL one of our leading SAGB ambassador members.
Cyrus was keen to research the famous Cornish Spider crab, currently being caught close inshore in sustainable numbers as they congregate to breed. We certainly all had a treat in store, as a highly successful fishing trip with local fishermen Andrew Stevens (@cornish_lobster) aboard his boat ‘Benediction’ saw us return with a good catch of cock Spiders for Cyrus to cook and showcase four different ways on the quayside. We also managed to fit in a hugely informative visit to the National Lobster Hatchery’s satellite project at Newlyn, where Cyrus experienced first hand, the incredible, groundbreaking, native lobster conservation work going on there in conjunction with local fishermen.
We think the whole trip was a huge success and has paved the way for future productions where we’ll investigate why these different and incredibly delicious and nutritious shellfish should be embraced right here in the UK as part of a rejuvenated seafood culture.
Sit back then and enjoy this glorious account of our trip to Newlyn Harbour and how we learned that a species that’s mostly exported, is not only harvested right under our noses, but could be a way of reconnecting to the culinary ways of our grandparents, affording us delicious, sustainable, seasonal eating at little cost to the environment.
We wonder where our Adventures in Shellfish will take us next?