They are delicious to eat and have actually mad a bit of a comeback in foodie circles over the past few years. I remember going to a wedding about 5 years ago where the entree was 4 boiled peeled yabbies artistically arranged over some salad greens. It made me smile, because it was a huge wedding, and I had visions of some poor kitchen hand having to peel about a thousand yabbies to pull this off.
On the weekend we decided to catch our own little yabbie feast because we wanted to make a yabbie pizza. My Dad, Farmgirl and I were given the job of chief yabbie catchers. We headed off to one of our dams with our nets.
|Farmgirl And Her Grandfather (She Shouldn't Have Been Dragging Her Net!)|
As we are at the end of a hot dry summer this dam has very low water levels.
|Very Low Dam|
There are several ways to catch yabbies. We used nets because they are easy and efficient. My Dad used to catch them with an old mutton chop tied to a piece of string when he was young. This is very fun but takes ages. Basically it involves dragging the chop slowly through the water and the yabbies either grab on or follow behind. Then, when the chop reaches the dam edge, you have to grab the yabbie very quickly. This is harder than it sounds!
Anyway - we used nets and good old dog biscuits for bait. Here is a baited net.
|Baited Net - Bait In Poly Pipe|
The bait goes into the poly pipe with holes in it. The yabbies are attracted by the bait and once they are in the net can't get out (as long as the net is the right way up!).
The nets are thrown in the water.
|Net Hitting The Water|
|Stand On That Rope|
If you forget this step, the whole net goes in and you will have to wade into that muddy dam, and risk getting your toes nibbled by hungry yabbies, to get it.
The next step involves sitting on the dam bank and having a ponder.
Then you pull your net and catch lots of these.
The yabbies need to sit in clean freshwater for a little while before cooking so they don't taste all muddy.
When we have lots of yabbies (ie if we are having a party) we use the bath for this - super clean domestic goddesses should look away now.
Afterwards I clean the bath really well before The Farmchildren get in - I promise!
On the weekend we boiled our yabbies up, and then peeled them, mixed them with some coriander and garlic and put them on a pizza.
How yummy does this look?
|Yummy Yabbie Pizza|