Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Crab Walk


Crab walking...

I took myself
down to the river
for my daily constitutional
to tease out
those tricky little tendons
and ligaments
around my ankle

and came across
a young man loading
many crates
of these red-orange beauties
into his van

only a few crabbing boats
and prawn trawlers
come into the river
the bar is too shallow and dangerous
to foster a fishing industry base
on the river foreshore

these are Spanner Crabs,
which are found
on the east and West coasts
of Australia,

with the scientific name
of Ranina Ranina

Photo from rawfish.com.au

they take their name from their first legs
which are spanner (wrench) shaped
while the others are flattened
and have numerous short bristles

Unlike other crabs
who move sideways
the Spanner Crab
moves forwards and backwards

The crabs are found in sandy bays
in intertidal waters
to a depth of 100 metres
They eat worms, fish, crustacea,
molluscs and sea urchins
and are often found where there is prawn fishery
suggesting that they also eat the discards
from the trawl as part of their diet

Turtles in turn feed on Sand Crabs

Most crabs are exported
to East Asia, particularly Taiwan
They weigh 900gms
and the carapace measures 150mm

The pigeons
have also got food on the brain

and battle
with a large crust of bread

I wander on
looking at the colours
of the hire boats
at this time of day

and thinking of crab

and my stroll ends at the red
of the giant Terminalia Tree
which are found
all around the shores
of the islands of Hawaii

and I still think of crab...

Photo from spannercrabsnoosa.com

This is the lovely couple
who have the spanner crab stall
at the Farmers' Market

Crab Stuffed Avocado Salad


3/4 lb (340 g) lump crabmeat, or cooked shrimp, chopped if large
1/4 cup (60 ml) mayonnaise
1 1/2 tbsp (22 ml) fresh lemon juice
1 tbsp (15 ml) chopped fresh Italian parsley, tarragon or dill
Salt and pepper to taste
6 oz (165 g) mixed salad greens
1/2 cucumber, halved and thinly sliced
Lemon wedges
Drizzle of olive oil
2 large firm, ripe avocados


Pick through the crabmeat for cartilage, setting aside a few legs to garnish the plates.

Gently fold together the crabmeat (or shrimp), mayonnaise, lemon juice and parsley.
Season lightly with salt and pepper.

Distribute the salad greens among dinner plates and top with the cucumber slices.
Drizzle some lemon juice over the greens, then drizzle with a little olive oil and season with salt and pepper.

Cut the avocados in half and remove the pits, then carefully remove the peel.
Place a half avocado on each bed of greens and pile crab salad in each cavity.

Garnish the plates with the reserved crab legs.




  1. Just been catching up on all your amazing walks! I'm not a great fan of crabs, but I do absolutely love that giant Terminalia tree! We have different types of terminalias over here, too, which are some of my favourite trees. Great to spot the daffodils and all the blossoms, too.. :)

  2. Next time out avocados and crab will be on my list...crab stuffed salmon is a favorite dish of mine, and I could eat avocados at any meal.
    My meals of late have been influenced by grandchildren, they have been dropping in almost everyday, I think it's because school is about to start. Their favorite is chicken salad!

  3. Hello Karen -it's nice to see you again.

    What do your Terminalias look like?

    They are majestic trees and when they drop the red leaves - so vibrant...

    Happy days

  4. Hi Wanda

    When you say stuffed salmon do you use a whole fish?

    Tonight I had fresh crab from the Spanner Crab stall at the market so I marinated it in a mild chilli sauce and then steamed it in a little package before adding it to the mayonnaise mix mentioned here and served it as outlined...
    It was just delicious...

    So does school go back this week for your babies...Do the children live quite close to you that they can visit easily?
    You will miss the lively company when they have gone...

    Happy days

  5. Another enjoyable walk!
    Thank you.
    Sunny :)

  6. I don't like crabs or seafood in general, but I have a soft spot for boats big and small--those boats for hire looked so sweet, made me want to jump into one of them!

  7. Hello there Jelica

    we didn't eat much seafood as children bar the old fish and chips on Friday nights for a treat...or as we were living in New Zealand it should be pronounced Fush and chups...

    So I have acquired a taste for fish and some shellfish - not all...

    Hiring a boat and idling around the river is a lovely, restful way to see the birdlife and enjoy being out on the water- especially the last few days which have jumped from winter right into summer at 30* and 35*, but I think it will return to late winter for a short while yet before summer really appears...

    Happy days

  8. Hello Sunny

    thanks for coming along...

    Happy days

  9. delwyn my dear, i've not had breakfast yet and i've just been over to another blog and read about blackberry creme brule and now this!!!! i'm going crazy!!!
    anyhow, i have all the ingredients for this recipe except the crab - could you e-mail me a couple?!!!
    thanks for the tasty walk!! have a lovely evening by the river. steven

  10. I enjoyed joining you on your walk. You certainly live in a beautiful part of the country.

    Unlike Steven, I've had my breakfast, but now you've made we hungry all over again.

  11. What a great walk and to imagine all those crabs! Crab stuffed avocado salad sounds delicious!

  12. yum dinner, I'll also have some Morton Bay Bugs too please

  13. I got a crab story, and a crab recipe here. Lovely.

  14. I love crabs! And, I love your photos of them. Our worlds are so different - thanks for sharing yours!

  15. A walk AND a recipe!! :)

    I love crab...never had spanner crab (that I know of) as we get the Alaskan King here and snowcrab (which I'm not as fond of...too small to really get into!).

    I was looking for something to do with avocado the other day...and now I know what it's going to be!! Thanks!

  16. Not a whole salmon...Just s slit in the top of a large fillet...
    Yes Delwyn...all 9 grandchildren live within walking distance...both of my son's families live very small distances through the woods and my daughter and her family just a bit farther but still it's only about a 10 min. walk. So, they are here often.

  17. crab sandwiches on a Cornish beach, minutes after the crabs have been landed. Come and try it some time.
    I just scrolled down, daffodils??, cherry blossom ??, daisies ?? we are getting ready to lose the leaves on the cherry trees!!

    Have happy summer down under.

  18. I happen to have some crab in the fridge. I think this recipe is calling...

  19. Hi there Steven

    Oh I read that berry brulee last night and got peckish before going to bed! I've never tried making one but its a good excuse to get a blowtorch...

    OK, in the mail it goes...but might be a bit on the nose when it arrives...well you could try the canned ones..but the fresh would be far superior...

    Happy days

  20. Hello Barry

    it's nice to have you here again...

    Yes this part of Qld is pretty special - warm climate and flora and fauna of diverse range...

    Well maybe you can make a crab salad for dinner...

    Happy days Barry

  21. Good morning Alicia

    It was a surprise to see the crabs - I never have before on this walk...and the colour...so vibrant orangey red...usually shellfish changes to a bright colour once heated, but not these...

    I hope you try the simple salad...

    Happy days

  22. Hi Rosaria

    it works well to combine the two. Our friend Lola is a master of the foody story telling...

    Happy days

  23. Hi Kb

    our worlds are so vastly different...and that makes this sharing so wonderful...so educational and enjoyable...

    I was telling Beloved this morning about your ordeal in the mts...He was very interested...

    keep safe...

    Happy days

  24. Hi Sherry

    yes the double whammy today...

    I have been buying the fresh crab meat - all the hard work having been done, and then I cooked it last night by marinating it in a mild sweet chilli sauce and folding it up into a little package and steaming it for 10 mins...perfect then to add to this recipe...
    It was 10/10 so I hope that you try it...

    Happy days

  25. Wanda

    ok, thought a whole salmon might feed your entire extended family!

    I will try that...

    How lovely to have all the family within walking distance...enjoy them all, I know you do...

    Happy days

  26. Hi Friko

    will do one day...thank you

    I was in NZ for a few days Friko hence the temperate climate spring pics...

    Happy days

  27. Hello Nancy

    it is nice to see you here again...

    Perfect timing then...let me know the outcome..bon apetite

    Happy days

  28. after seeing all those crab, you'll have to treat yourself to a crab dinner.

  29. Hi Janie

    I did just that...I bought crab from the Farmers' Market on Sunday and we had the fresh salad last night...perfect...

    Happy days

  30. interesting read. I would love to follow you on twitter. By the way, did anyone learn that some chinese hacker had hacked twitter yesterday again.

  31. nice post. I would love to follow you on twitter. By the way, did anyone hear that some chinese hacker had hacked twitter yesterday again.


Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.