There are three kinds of crabs caught in Fukui.
The male Zuwai-gani (snow crab) caught around Echizen Coast in Fukui is called
"Echizen-gani". "Kani" or "gani" means crab in Japanese.
Fishing season for the Echizen-gani is from November 6th to March 20th.
It's well known as the most expensive and the largest one in Fukui.
It's a luxurious food, so even most of the people from Fukui, they hardly eat it.
The female snow crab is called "Seiko-gani" which is smaller than
the Echizen-gani (the male ones). Typically, the female ones are 1/3 of
the size of the male ones. The fishing season for the female ones is
from November 6th to December 31st. The pregnant ones carry
"sotoko (fertilized eggs)". When you chew the fertilized eggs,
you get satisfying popping crunchy texture like sea grapes.
"uchiko (the ovary)" has a rich strong crab flavor. I like both.
The price of the Seiko-gani is much lower than the Echizen-gani,
so it's more likely for people in Fukui Prefecture to eat the Seiko-gani
than the Echizen-gani. In addition, at some schools in Fukui Prefecture,
the Seiko-gani is served for their school lunch and students learn how to eat it properly.
After enjoying the crab meat of Seiko-gani and or Echizen-gani,
it's even more enjoyable to pour sake into the shell and drink it directly from the shell.
The sake will take on a subtle flavor of the "kani-miso (the brown meat)".
It is the best way to complete the crab.
The freshly molted male snow crab is called "Mizu-gani".
It is young male crab and the word "young" is "waka" in Japanese,
so it is also called "Waka-gani". Also, the crab meat of Mizu-gani can
easily be taken out of the shell, so it's called "Zubo-gani".
"Zubo" is a Japanese word to show a sound of something is taken out of something easily.
The crab meat of Mizu-gani is as large as the Zuwai-gani but the price of the Mizu-gani is
one third of the Zuwai-gani. Therefore, Mizu-gani is popular as well.
A friend of mine from outside the prefecture visited Fukui Prefecture to have Mizu-gani.
He enjoyed it so much and he even bought some more crabs to take home.
I would like to share a video of "Fukui Prefectural Tourism Federation".
You can see the crab auction.
Last year and this year, there have been shortage of crabs,
so I haven't eaten them as much I usually would eat.
I hope that it'll be a good year for the crabs next year.
If you haven't tried having the amazing crabs from Fukui,
how about visiting Fukui Prefecture, enjoy the charms of the prefecture, and eating the crabs?