Les EtrillesLes Etrilles
©Les Etrilles|Julie Hurricane
The currycombthe finest of crabs

The currycomb

We've got a crush on her!

The etrille is a crustacean prized by seafood lovers. With a taste close to that of lobster, this little crab sets the taste buds of even the most fine gourmets abuzz.

The currycomb:

thin-fleshed crustacean

The etrille is a highly sought-after crabe. Its flesh is excellent and similar to that of the lobster. At low tide, it hides under rocks. It can be flushed out by moving or lifting the stone. However, it is essential to reposition the stone in its original location.

Gray in color when fished, it turns orange-red when cooked.

The etrille can be recognized by its flattened last legs like sickle blades and its rough carapace, very easy to recognize by touch, even by sight. Its two front claws, serrated like those of the lobster, are amazingly mobile.

It’s the crab that’s the most fine-tasting but the longest to peel!”

Where, when and how

fishing the currycomb?

Regulatory catch size is 6.5 cm wide. It is possible to catch specimens larger than 11 cm. At our destination, the etrille is caught mainly on rocky bottoms by hobby anglers, such as at Kairon or Granville. It can be fished all year round during high tides.

It’s quite an aggressive crab. That’s why we recommend wearing gloves to catch it. Its pinch is not dangerous and you just have to wait a little for it to let go.

It’s nicknamed the “cherry crab” because of its red eyes.

In Granville, the etrille is also caught in casiers by professionals. The authorized number of traps is 200 per man embarked.

Recipe and tips

to taste the étrille

To cook the étrilles, count 8 minutes in boiling salted water.

No bouquet garni, it’s better plain.

Our ambassador Élodie’s secret recipe:
For about 6 gluttons


  • 1 kg étrilles made in Granville Terre et Mer.
  • 20 cl white wine.
  • 1 tablespoon Armagnac.
  • Two fine tomatoes.
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste.
  • 2 fine carrots.
  • Persley, fresh thyme, laurel..
  • Garlic, onions to taste.
  • 1 dash cayenne pepper/paprika, to be adapted according to taste and strength of pepper.
  • Salt, pepper.
  • Olive oil or butter for Normans, or both.
  • 2 tablespoons crème fraîche or vegetable cream.
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch.

Preparation and dressing:

  • Fry the carrots and onions in the fat and tap the curries with a roller to break them up.
  • Add them to the vegetables and top up with chopped tomatoes, tomato paste, bouquet garni, salt, pepper, pimento/ paprika, cornstarch and about 2 liters of water (cover what’s in the pot as for a soup).
  • Let simmer for 30/40 minutes.
  • Put everything through a super blender/grinder.
  • Cook again for 20 min.
  • Put through a food mill and add cream…. Or not, depending on taste.
  • A few slices of farmhouse bread, toasted and lightly rubbed with garlic (or not).
  • Add slices of chorizo (snacked) stirred in at the last moment.
  • Trick: if there are any left over, take an ice cube bag, freeze a few to make the soup a delicious sauce base.

Happy eating!


all the flavours of home