Published July 1, 2012. From Cook's Illustrated.
Do seafood scissors live up to their promise in making it easier to cut through hard shells?
Cutting open thick, hard seafood shells to extract the meat can be challenging, but seafood scissors promise to make the job easier. We tested two pairs against our favorite all-purpose Shun Classic Kitchen Shears ($49.95), snipping through pounds of lobster, king crab, and shrimp and lifting out the meat. The kitchen shears’ thick, straight blades, though excellent for butterflying chicken and snipping herbs, were difficult to fit into narrow claws and legs and tended to hack up delicate meat in the process. The straight, bulky blades on our losing seafood scissors shared the same problem, and their one innovation—a splatter-blocking shield—merely served to obstruct our view. Our winner was just right: sturdy enough to slice through a crab carapace, easily able to follow the arc of a shrimp shell or lobster tail, and thin enough to neatly extract meat from a lobster leg. These shears saved time—and didn’t waste one morsel of precious meat.