Crab sticks once upon a time, back in Soviet times, were a rare delicacy. Now the situation is different - they have become so accessible and popular that they can be found in almost any store. Crab sticks are very popular in the culinary arts, especially often they are used to make salads. Therefore, it will be useful to know what kind of product it is and how to store it properly.
How do crab sticks
As many probably already know, despite the name, crab sticks have nothing to do with crab meat. Crab sticks are only an imitation of crab meat and are prepared on the basis of surimi - minced oceanic white fish. There is an opinion that surimi are produced from fish processing waste, and therefore crab sticks, although tasty, are absolutely useless. This is a profound error. Making surimi, manufacturers remove fat, blood, enzymes and instant components from fish meat as much as possible, after which pure fish protein, iron and iodine remain in it. On this basis, it cannot be said that there is no benefit at all from crab sticks. In addition, minced fish is made from fresh fish - it should be caught no later than 6-10 hours before the beginning of dressing. After processing the fish meat, the remaining ingredients are added to it. The resulting mixture is shaped into the finished product. Then crab sticks tint, freeze and packaged in packages.
Some manufacturers instead of minced fish use soy protein or substitutes. According to experts, from such a product is best to give up. They advise you to purchase carefully packed crab sticks from a reliable manufacturer. Crab sticks, sold by weight, should not be bought either, since you cannot get information about the composition about them.
How to choose crab sticks
In order for crab sticks not to disappoint with their taste and quality, they should be chosen based on the following criteria:
- Crab sticks should be similar in appearance to natural crab meat - they have an elastic structure and a reddish color. Too bright color of the product indicates the presence in the composition of the artificial dye.
- Dry and stuck together crab sticks indicate improper storage conditions or the use of poor quality raw materials. Ice on the package is another sign of non-compliance with the rules of storage.
- Crab sticks should be purchased that have a minimum amount of artificial additives. It is also important to pay attention to the amount of surimi - natural fish fillets should be 25-45%. The normal ratio of surimi in the product is easy to check - crab sticks should be easily separated from the wrapper.
- Although crab sticks and affordable product, they can not be too cheap. A product with a low price may indicate either an artificial composition or a poor quality of raw materials.
- After defrosting, crab sticks should retain both taste and texture. In no case should they be too wet and too “rubber”.
Shelf life of crab sticks
- If you store frozen crab sticks in the freezer at -18 degrees, they will be edible for 2 months from the date of manufacture.
- The thawed product should be consumed for 3 days and stored in a refrigerating chamber from +2 to +6 degrees.
Please note that it is not possible to re-freeze crab sticks. This is detrimental to their taste and texture.