Wild Recipes

Dungeness Crab Sushi Bowls

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The Oregon Dungeness Crab Comission’s Dungeness Crab fishery is considered the most valuable single species commercial fishery in Oregon, with the value of the fishery ranging from $33 million to $74 million per season in the past ten years. So it’s no wonder fishermen like Brett Pankey from Waldport risk their lives every season for a chance to cash in on one of Oregon’s top 10 leading agricultural commodities. It’s not easy money though, fisherman like Pankey work exhausting hours throughout the season – which typically runs from December to August, traversing the coastline hundreds of times, pulling in 300 commercial-size pots and yielding up to 6,000 pounds of crab per trip. Pankey and his crew will oftentimes stay out on the open waters all night long, rapidly emptying and sorting thousands of pounds of crab, keeping only male crabs of legal size which requires the strength and sharpened focus from a seasoned crew.

Fishermen like Pankey have been risking their lives since 1848 when San Francisco fishermen first began the Dungeness crab fishery. Since 1995, the fishery has operated under a limited entry permit system which only allows 424 permits to be issued, capping the number of vessels allowed to participate in the fishery as well as implementing pot limits in 2006 which designated the amount of gear each permitted vessel could use (three tiers of 200, 300 or 500 pots). 

I had the unique opportunity to follow Pankey’s Dungeness crab from his 100 year old historic fishing vessel with the name “SMITH BRO’S No.2” engraved in the hull, from the Yaquina Bay where the Dungeness crab were offloaded at Port Dock 7 to Shrimp Daddy’s Bait and Tackle Shack in Waldport where over 100 pounds of Pankey’s Dungeness crabs will be kept in live tanks until they’re sold to Shrimp Daddy’s customers. Pankey not only works diligently to keep those tanks at Shrimp Daddy’s stocked with live Dungeness crab all season, he also supplies tens of thousands of pounds of live crab to large distributors such as Living Pacific Seafood out of Newport. 

Dungeness Crab Sushi Bowls

Thanks to hardworking fishermen like Brett Pankey, the 2021-22 commercial Oregon Dungeness crab fishery landed a total of 17.2 million pounds of Dungeness crab into Oregon ports which was the highest grossing season on record by more than 17 million dollars. This not only boosts Oregon’s economy as a whole and is the backbone of many small local businesses like Shrimp Daddy’s Bait and Tackle Shack but the Dungeness crab fishery also supports countless families within our community as well. So shop local, eat local, and thank those fishermen because what they do for our community is simply remarkable. 

Makes: 2-3 sushi bowls


Looking for more crab recipes? Try this Blue Crab Chowder by C. Jodlowski!


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Dungeness Crab Sushi Bowls

Recipe by Katie Wiley
0.0 from 0 votes
Course: Wild Recipes
Servings

2-3

servings
Prep time

30

minutes
Cooking time

20

minutes
Cook Mode

Keep the screen of your device on

Ingredients

  • Toppings
  • 2 Dungeness crab, cooked and picked

  • Diced cucumber

  • Diced avocado

  • Roasted seaweed cut into thin strips

  • Sriracha Sushi Sauce
  • 1/2 cup Mayo

  • 1/4 cup sweet chili sauce

  • 2 tsp Sriracha

  • 2 tsp rice wine vinegar

  • Sushi Rice
  • 1.5 cups sushi rice (I use premium grade Nishiki rice found at Mai’s Asian Market in Newport)

  • 2 cups water

  • ¼ cup rice vinegar

  • 1 -2 Tbsp. sugar

  • 1 tsp salt

Preparation

  • For the Rice
  • Place sushi rice in a fine mesh strainer and rinse rice under running water until water runs clear.
  • Bring water and rice to a boil, reduce heat to a simmer, cover the pot with a lid, and simmer for 20 minutes or use a rice cooker or Instant Pot set on “rice” setting.
  • In a separate small saucepan combine vinegar, sugar, and salt over medium heat. Stir until sugar and salt have dissolved.
  • When rice is cooked, transfer it to a large bowl and then pour the seasoned vinegar evenly over top. Toss until the rice is well coated using either a rice paddle or a silicone spatula. And be careful not to smush the rice, gently fold it until it’s evenly mixed.
  • Cover the rice with a damp paper towel to prevent it from drying out and let it sit until it has cooled to room temperature.
  • Once cooled, add to sushi sandwiches.
  • For the Sauce
  • Mix together until smooth. Refrigerate until ready to use.
  • For the Sushi Bowl
  • To assemble your Dungeness Crab Sushi Bowl, add sushi rice, top with cucumber, avocado, Dungeness crab, seaweed and drizzle with Sriracha Sushi Sauce then enjoy!

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Katie Wiley

Katie Wiley, also known as The Kitchen Wild has a strong drive to share with the world how simple, fun, and delicious foraging for wild foods can be. She calls the picturesque central Oregon coast home, and lives only a short walk from the Pacific Ocean and Alsea Bay so she’s never far from some of the most delicious and fun-to-gather foods on the planet. Whether she’s pulling up pots of Dungeness crab, catching crawfish with her bare hands or raking for cockle clams she always has her husband and three children right by her side on these adventures and hopes to inspire you to do the same.

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