One of the great things about life on the West Coast is the abundant seafood selection that we have here. It is so easy for us to buy fresh seafood that is caught from the local waters. One such place where you can get fresh seafood straight from the fisherman’s boat is at the Fishermen’s Wharf in Steveston. On the weekends, you can head down to the wharf to find the season’s latest catch. This weekend, we saw Spot prawns and the more exotic sea urchin for $10/3 small or $10/2 large.
After missing an opportunity to get the sea urchins last time, I was really excited that I was finally able to bring three large sea urchins home on Saturday. Sea urchins are round and spiny globular animals in the same family as sand dollars and they look like hedgehogs of the sea. Inside of each round skeleton is five edible pieces of orange “roe” which is actually the gonads (reproductive organ). The “roe” has a very distinct rich, briny flavour and creamy texture. I have always been a big fan of uni when dining at Japanese restaurants. I could say that my love of uni is so great that it transcends my dislike for working on anything in my kitchen except for my dear macarons. I am a terrible cook and preparing seafood is definitely not on my to-do list. By the time I packed up these urchins in the trunk and headed home, I was already starting to panic. How was I going to prepare seafood for myself for the very first time?! It was a daunting task indeed.
Technically, it’s actually not too difficult if you have a sharp pair of culinary scissors. (Mine were from Henkel.) And I actually didn’t even need to wear a pair of gloves because I removed most of the spikes from the incision location first.
Here’s a few tips and instructions: