Making Peace with your Crab

No, I’m not talking about soothing that loved one who injects occasional crankiness into your life. I assume you have that covered, especially during this season. After all, since childhood we’ve been told the message of our year-end holidays is peace and goodwill.

On this first day of a month when festive food becomes our culture’s preoccupation, I’ll merely wax poetic about an item I discovered during travel in Japan, a little something that eases certain meals in our home. If you haven’t seen this item before, can you guess what it is from the picture below?


Utensils we brought home from Japan

Take a hint from this question: have you sworn off serving crab to guests, to spare them the burden of fighting to dig out the delicious meat?

Alaska King Crab Legs

Image by chriki24 via Flickr

These forks from Japan can make light of the work and turn the struggle into a minor ritual of elegance. Just crack the crab, stick the sleek fork in, and pull or lift. Voila! Out comes the meat, white and sweet—the perfect appetizer, in my humble opinion.

I first encountered these forks at a ryokan, during dinner delivered with great ceremony and eaten at a low table as our family sat together on our room’s tatami floor. The usefulness of these forks immediately struck me, and the discovery felt so important that the next day I ran out to a store to buy them to bring home. As well as taking the struggle out of eating crab, they seem always to serve as conversation starters.

I’ve looked around for these forks in the USA, and haven’t seen any quite like these. US and European versions do exist, but the tines of the Japanese forks are slightly different from the rest. The  Japanese forks, to my taste at least, are sleeker and a bit more elegant.

The elegant curvature of the Japanese crab fork

Though it’s possible the Japanese forks might be available at a few Asian grocery stores in this country, I’ve just learned that anyone can get them over the internet. Here’s the link to a company who offers them: (Type crab fork in the search box in the upper right corner. The item number is EK_2028-1.)  Wouldn’t these forks make a different and charming holiday gift?

Who knows? If spreading word about these forks reduces struggles at holiday tables, this might also spread a bit more peace around the world.

And, by the way, if cracking a crab intimidates you a little, just check out this neat video.

Happy December!

Bon voyage,

Rita Elizabeth


About RitaElizabeth

I'm a recently widowed wife and mother who loves to use ideas and experiences from travel to enrich my family's life at home. I blog to share ideas with you and to hear your ideas and comments.
This entry was posted in Christmas, Entertaining, Food, Silverware/cutlery and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

10 Responses to Making Peace with your Crab

  1. Diane says:

    Thanks for sharing the Japanese crab forks! I’m heading over to the website to check them out. Hugs, Diane

  2. Thanks for stopping by, Diane! Hope you enjoy the crab forks. Hugs back, and try not to get too terribly busy during this holiday season. 🙂

  3. polly says:

    I like the Japaneses forks, but do not like crap. Hope you have a great week, and have a safe and happy holidays

  4. Thanks for stopping by, Polly. I enjoyed your blog post on the endangered species. Thanks for reminding me of this issue again. Safe and happy hols to you, too!

  5. kenny2dogs says:

    Hi Rita.
    Hope you are well and looking forward to X/mas. I like all sea food including Crab. I go fishing in a boat and catch some fine Cod. BTW… I do like the term ” Stay at home traveler” Don’t know why, but it reminds me of just laying in bed letting my mind do the wandering, around far flung places I have never been to.
    kenny2dogs. 🙂

  6. Hi, Kenny,

    Thanks for stopping by again. I’m so glad you enjoy the name of my blog. You know, I used to travel a lot, and love it, but now that my dear husband is ill, we can only do very limited traveling. I’ve found that, even so, I can experience daily all the richness travel has brought to my life, even while I stay at home. I know many people are in my situation, whether it be due to the economy, illness, or other reasons to travel mostly from home. And yes, just as you say, I also can lie in bed and let my mind do the wandering, and that is wonderful.

    I used to go fishing with my dad when I was a girl. He is gone now, but my “little” brother (50+) is an avid fisherman.

    Where do you fish from your boat and catch cod?

    Hope you’re doing very well today. Again, so glad to hear from you.

    • kenny2dogs says:

      My friend and I fish out of the river Tees, off “Redcar”. That is on the east coast of N/Yorkshire, But as you can appreciate I have not been able to do much fishing of late. I miss the silence of the sea, the dolphins, seals ect, and the silence is only broken by the calls of the sea birds as they pass overhead.
      I also fish in the Stockholm Archipelago in Sweden. My Daughter and G/children live there. I miss them so much specialy at this time of year. But I visit them when I can, such a beautiful place.

      I enjoy reading about peoples life styles, how they perceive life and compare them to my own. So a big thank you for sharing your thoughts and experiences. You are a most interesting person.
      Bye Bye for now, I shall most certainly call in again.
      Peace from your English friend.
      Kenny 🙂

      • Hi, Kenny,

        Thanks for your comment. I hope to post again today or tomorrow. We’ve just spent the past week (well, the past year and a half) moving house. We’re downsizing because of the demands of my dear husband’s disease. He’s doing quite well, though, even under the circumstances, though he’s pretty frail. He’s my sweetie pie, so I love helping him even though (for his sake, not mine) I wish he were able to be the robust, athletic man he was until the pain started two years ago.

        I can imagine how you must miss your daugther and g-kids during this time of the year. I miss my far-flung family and friends, too, including some dear friends in England!

        Thank you for telling me about your fishing. I can just imagine what it must be like on those seas. I loved living in England, and I loved the closeness to the sea one feels living on what is, after all, an island. I lived in Winchester, so I had to drive to the sea, but not that far–well, to the Solent and to the Channel, if not actually to the sea or the ocean, but you know what I mean.

        I will look up where you fish on a map. I wasn’t immediately familiar with those places, having lived in Southwest England. Didn’t get a chance to travel the entire country. There is so much to experience there and there was so little time.

        I can imagine how you miss this peaceful activity, the birds, the sea animals, the clouds–yes, even the clouds–and the sun poking through them. However, you seem to be doing well, so you certainly can envision doing that again. I’ll think of you on the seas again!

        Looking forward to hearing from you again.

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