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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello all

Collected my 1st few peelers over the weekend,

I have a question, do you peel the shell or just leave them as there are?

I put my crabs straight in the freezer and then through that I should have done something with them (apart from wrap them seperatly),

Oh, one crab was a softie and not a crab that had started to peel, does this make a difference?:cc_surren

Any help would be good

Lee:fishing:
 

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I always fully peel them and remove any tiny segments of shell plus gills,less chance of the crab going off and ending up as mush also helps when fishing matches or fishing a flood tide when time peeling crab is time wasted .The softie would just need the gills removing .The shells can hold lots of types of bacteria which don't help keeping the meat firm if left on. So i peel them fully and then give them a quick rinse to remove the really tiny bits ;)
 

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Unless they were already starting the crack their shells, then you have frozen them a bit too soon.
You need to "bring them on" first, just to the point where back of the top shell cracks just above the "V" on the underside. You may also see cracks start to appear on the underside, just about where the crabs "cheeks" are. This is the time to freeze them, they are prime "poppers" at this stage. You can peel them and then freeze them, or freeze them as they are. If you do peel them first, many people lift up the sides of the top shell and cut out the lungs/gills first. This is because its in these lungs that the bacteria which can cause the crab to spoil are mainly found. You will soon see if this has happened as the crab will look black on the underside once thawed. At this point, theyre not very good, apart from maybe for extra hungry doggies.
However, if yr gonna use the crab up soon, then it's not essential to de-lung them, but some people do it as a matter of course anyway. Personally, I never have crab in my freezer for long, so I dont peel or lung them.
Softbacks are just peelers that have already naturally peeled. Opinion is divided on whether they are as effective as peelers which you peel yourself, as (apparently) the natural scent of a peeled crab is not quite as attractive as one which is just about to peel, or that you have peeled yourself.
Hoipe this helps, but use the search facility, there are loads an loads of threads on peelers/softies.
 

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freeze them in their shells while still kicking. you will also find that the ones which were a bit on the hard side to peel whilst fresh, peel a hell of a lot easier after being frozen, and the frozen ones are nearly as good as fresh.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 · (Edited)
Hello all

Thanks for the info chaps.

All but one crab (the softie) had cracked shells and looked well on there way to being fully peeled, wasn't sure if the fish preferred them with the shell on or off.

Next time I will cut the lungs/gills out to try snd keep them in prime condition.

Cheers

Lee
 
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