Cooking Redclaw Crayfish
Redclaw Crayfish is considered a delicacy in Australia with the texture and flavor of the flesh comparing favorably with other commonly eaten marine crustaceans. Fresh Redclaw have a smooth, lustrous shell that is deep blue to green in color, with males exhibiting a bright red coloring on the margins of their large claws. Cooked, they present as bright red, typical of premium crustaceans.
The meat is arguably more healthy than traditional seafood products as it is low in fat, cholesterol and salt. Comparable to a fresh lobster, the meat is moist and firm, sweet and delicate – and the claws are the sweetest. The meat is a great filling in pasta dishes like ravioli, as an addition to salads and seafood platters, or as an entrée. Redclaw are also ideal for soups and bisques, and they can be barbecued, steamed, grilled and pan fried both in and out of the shell.
Preparation For Cooking
Before cutting the Redclaw Crayfish or removing its tail, put it on ice or in the fridge for an hour or two to put it to sleep. This will make preparation easier. To remove the digested food tract from the crayfish, simply snap off the center tail fin and pull the food trail out.
Redclaw Crayfish can be prepared by boiling in much the same way as other crustaceans. The cooked crayfish should be a red color all over with the flesh evenly white. Redclaw are great cooked on the barbecue or under the grill. Cut Redclaw in halves, wash, add the seasoning of your choice, and cook. Brush the meat with seasoned butter or oils and garlic, chives or dill. A few minutes cooking on each side is all it takes.
Want a couple of sample recipes featuring Redclaw Crayfish as the main attraction?
Sample Recipe #1: Crayfish Bruschetta
2 Lebanese cucumbers diced
2 Roma tomatoes diced
50 ml Olive oil
1 Tablespoon sesame oil
2 tablespoons olive oil (extra)
Juice and rind of 1 lemon
2 Tablespoons Sesame seeds, toasted
8 thick slices of baguette
1 small spanish onion, thinly sliced
2 pounds small cooked redclaw, removed from shell and sliced.
Preheat oven to 350º.
Sprinkle cucumber with salt, stand for 15 minutes.
Place olive and sesame oil, juice, rind and sesame seeds in a bowl, whisk and set aside.
Brush bread with extra olive oil and brown in oven for 12 minutes turning once.
Rinse cucumber, pat dry.
Place in bowl with onion and tomato, stir to combine.
Place bread on serving platter. Place a spoonful of both crayfish and vegetable mixture on each slice of bread.
Finish by drizzling dressing mixture over each piece just before serving.
Sample Recipe #2: Grilled Redclaw with Lemon and Dill Butter
1/2 pound best-quality unsalted butter, softened
finely grated rind 2 lemons
2 tsp sea salt
1 tbsp fresh dill, finely chopped
¼ tsp freshly cracked black pepper
¼ cup lemon juice
2 1/2 pounds red claw (purged)
Cream butter with lemon zest, salt, dill and pepper. Beat in lemon juice until amalgamated. Spoon out mixture in a line down the centre of a piece of aluminium foil and wrap whilst rolling to form a tight log. Twist the ends to seal. Place in the freezer for 3 hours or until firm.
Place live red claw in freezer for 20-30 minutes until red claw no longer move but are not frozen. Preheat grill plate over high heat. Using a large cook’s knife, plunge the tip at the thorax (where the head meets the body) and quickly cut down through the head. Swivel the red claw around to cut the opposite way through the body to cut in half. Rinse the head cavity and remove the alimentary canal.
Dry red claw with paper towel before drizzling with olive oil. Place cut side down on hot grill for 2 minutes before turning and cooking a further 2 minutes. (The flesh needs to be slightly under-cooked as the residual heat will continue the cooking process.) Place slices of the lemon and dill butter on the red claw and leave a further 30 seconds before removing from the grill. Serve with freshly cracked black pepper.
To learn more, visit the Crayfish page on this website. Live Aquaponics also sells a high-protein crayfish food perfect for raising Redclaws. If you have any questions about raising Australian Redclaw Crayfish, feel free to contact us. We love to talk with our customers.