Fall menus are about to get more exciting with the opening of the Alaska crab harvest season on Saturday, October 15. Beginning this weekend, wild, sustainable Alaska snow (opilio), Alaska king, and Alaska Dungeness crab will start making its way from the sea to restaurants nationwide. Alaska is home to some of the most prized species of crab, available year-round as frozen legs, clusters, or claws. Preserved immediately after it leaves the water, Alaska crab is cooked, rapidly chilled then commercially flash frozen at well below zero, ensuring it’s kept at the peak of freshness and locking in the best quality and flavor to use in recipes all year long.
From the rich flavor of king crab to the delicate, tender texture of snow crab and sweet flavor of Dungeness, Alaska crab is a versatile ingredient that can elevate a variety of recipes, such as salads, sandwiches, soups and pastas. This season is the perfect time for restaurants to offer customers unique recipes that spotlight these species of crab including:
Alaska Crab Mac & Cheese
Alaska Snow Crab Tortilla Soup
Alaska Dungeness Crab and Wild Mushroom Chowder
Alaska Crab Tacos
“The icy waters of Alaska produce some of the most flavorful crab in the world,” says Karl Uri, foodservice manager, Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute. “Just as important as its taste, wild Alaska crab is sustainably caught as part of the conservation ethic outlined in the Alaska State Constitution, which ensures that delicious Alaska crab and all Alaska seafood will continue to be available for generations to come.”
For the 2016—2017 season, the Total Allowable Catch (TAC) includes Bering Sea snow (opilio) crab, with a quota of 21.57 million pounds, and Bristol Bay’s red king crab, with a quota of 8.469 million pounds.
For more foodservice recipe ideas and information on Alaska’s species of crab varieties, visit www.wildalaskaseafood.com. The Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute (ASMI) maintains a resource library including point-of-sale materials, training tools, cooking tips, recipes and market research to make seafood an easy addition to any menu.