Friday, November 21, 2008

Kim's fresh crab

This girl murders crabs for a living! The lovely Kim at Kep's Seagull crab restaurant
Kep is well known for its fresh crab. There's the crab market on a slither of beach before you get to the main beach area with its seafront seafood shacks and fishing boats moored close to shore, then there's the picnic platforms and mats just by the main beach. Take your pick, there's more than enough fresh crab to go around. Our favourite turned out to be the Seagull restaurant, in the middle of the row of twenty-odd shacks near the crab market area. We were introduced to it by our tuk-tuk driver, Mr Peepee and it was an excellent recommendation. The food was very tasty but it was the family who run the business that made it that bit more special. Particularly 23 year old Kim, who was lively, funny, spoke great English and admitted to slaughtering thousands of crabs in her career as a crab chef! The menu is in English, the prices are very reasonable and you can choose the crabs you like the look of from the crab pots that are kept in the sea just in front of the restaurant. Kim sent her younger brother out to haul in one of the pots and then picked out the fattest and freshest crabs just for us. We followed her into the cramped kitchen to watch her at work, putting countless crabs to the sword and using her culinary talents to good effect to present us with two excellent meals on two separate days. I rarely eat crab but these tasted good to me and the sound of the waves lapping gently against the shore under the stilts of the restaurant was music to my ears. The crab fishing boats bobbed on the sea just metres away, with an occasional new arrival bringing a flurry of activity from the crab sellers on the sandy beach nearby. Everyone eats crab when they go to Kep, I suggest you seek out Kim at the Seagull and ask her to whip you up one of her specials.
Wading out to get the freshest crabs for our plates
Kim selects only the best for us, and often the smallest are the tastiest
Into the frying pan, some of the crabs have beautiful blue coloured legs
Kim and her mum work as a team in cramped conditions
Srey Keo, Kim's adorable twelve year old cousin, who kept us entertained
The nondescript entrance to the Seagull restaurant at the crab market, but don't be fooled, culinary delights await within

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