Best Steamed Crabs In Baltimore Md

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Edited by Jane Marion With Suzanne Loudermilk, Mike Unger, and Lydia Woolever PHOTOGRAPHY BY SCOTT SCHMAN Spot Illustrations by Jason Schneider Opening Spread: Styled by Janelle Erlichman Diamond. Hair & makeup: Brian Oliver and model: Kyler Garner, both from T.E. The Artist’s Group. Shot on location at Schultz’s Crab House.

Best Steamed Crabs In Baltimore Md

“How do I love you?” Elizabeth Barrett Browning once asked. When it comes to Maryland crab, we can barely count the ways—there are too many. But let’s try to show our pride. Every state has a reason to be proud, from Maine blueberries to Idaho potatoes. Here in the Mid-Atlantic, Maryland is for crab lovers. With no respect to oysters and rockfish, the blue crab reigns as the undisputed king of the Chesapeake Bay. And although they can be found as far north as Nova Scotia and as far south as Uruguay, a third of the blue crab harvest comes from our local waters.

Crabs And Crushes

In Maryland, there are two seasons – crab season (that’s May through November) and waiting for crab season. The latter occurs in the colder months when the crabs burrow into the bottom of the bay and hibernate during the winter. As the thermostat rises, the clams ascend with the warmer waters and swim into crab traps, when they are as beautiful and fat as possible – without giving a hint of salty-sweet and buttery in a way that is unique to our salty waters. Sure, you might travel to Birmingham or Boise and see a “Baltimore-style” or “Maryland-style” crab cake on the menu, but there’s no truth to that advertising. We’re the best and we’re happy to throw down the gauntlet – make that the mallet – to anyone who argues otherwise. Unlike other blue crab states—namely North Carolina, Texas, and Louisiana—where hard shells are often boiled, we boil our bay beauties, which means they stay mustardy and moist. , and of course our iconic home state brand of crab spices, Old Bay.

And while it may be too obvious, it must be said that there is only one place where you can eat Maryland crab – and that’s smack dab in the Old Line State, where there’s an almost religious fervor surrounding it. this seafood. We have some bad news on that front: Due to the demand for this seasonal seafood, as well as recurring visa issues for crab pickers, it’s not always possible to get Maryland crab. In fact, most seafood houses – even in season – supplement their local catch with other domestic crab, and the meat can come from as far away as Asia. That said, other blues make a decent alternative, since not that many places serve Maryland crab. Your best bet? Always ask where the crab comes from.

Crabs have long been an essential local protein throughout the Chesapeake. As early as 1,200 BC, these crustaceans were an important food source and were eaten continuously through the 17th century, when Native Americans and early settlers enjoyed eating them. Although crab shells are fragile and fragile, sites throughout the estuary have turned up archeological remains, from places like George Washington’s Mt. Vernon to Sukeek’s Cabin, a 19th-century African-American residence in Calvert County.

With this history, it’s safe to say that our craving for crab runs deep in our DNA – and it’s this time of year that the hunt kicks in full force. And we don’t just limit ourselves to crab cakes, hard shells, or soup. We use crab everywhere: folded into dips; stuffed into dumplings; sprinkled on top of muffins, waffles, and deviled eggs; piled high on chicken cheesesteaks—you name it. You can find crabs in their various incarnations at local seafood shacks, fine dining dens, pizza parlors, food trucks, food halls, and malls—and even High gas stations.

Steamed Large Male Hard Crabs

Below, find your fix, whatever you like to eat. Then get ready to celebrate the return of blue crabs to a paper folding table near you—and with it, one of Maryland’s most tried-and-true traditions.

Scenes from the Choptank: the aftermath of a crab feast; grapefruit and orange peel; crispy crab fritters with rémoulade and pickled vegetables; the historic entrance.

When we walked into this long store in a strip mall in Carroll County, we couldn’t help but notice the bags of carry-out orders behind the counter. Steamed crabs and seafood are big business here. There is also an indoor dining service, but we could not see the dining room immediately. Sensing our confusion as we entered through the bar, a friendly cashier directed us to a solid door that opened to a connecting room with about 10 tables. It’s a bare-bones place with a mural of docked boats and pictures of crab house scenes. Depending on the time of year, the cooked-to-order crabs are a combination of Maryland, Virginia, and Louisiana hard shells infused with the kitchen’s own seasoning. And the restaurant’s crab expertise is evident. After all, owner Dan Schuman, who runs the crab house with his brother, Mike, has been in the business since 1971, putting in time at the seafood market in Randallstown before opening Captain Dan’s in 2003. Simply put, the crabs are great.

People love cracking crabs while sitting near the water, but Captain James takes that a step further by allowing guests to eat crabs close to the water and on a boat That’s right, it’s not an actual boat, but a boat-shaped restaurant with an adjacent crab house that has a large deck on the water between Canton and Fells Point. That central location no doubt adds to the restaurant’s popularity, but the place wouldn’t have hung around so long if it didn’t also deliver quality. When we visited on a spring Friday evening, we found both the food and service to be top notch. The look comes with a price tag: these were among the most expensive crabs we encountered, from $100 for a medium dozen to $155 for jumbos (they’re only sold by the half dozen or dozen) . They were well seasoned and well cooked with sweet meat. There were oats on the cob, cold pitchers of beer, and an order of tasty fries that tasted like the boardwalk surrounding our meal, which was just as good as the view of the Patapsco.

Chefs’ Favorite Maryland Crab Restaurants

Crab Takes: Captain James Crab House is one of the last places to offer all-you-can-eat crab in town (with a two-hour dining limit), available Monday through Thursday, from 4 to 9 p.m.

Harvesting crabs with steam at the old Costas Inn school in Dundalk; Alfresco dining and live music at The Choptank.

At first glance, a casual visitor might not realize that the Choptank is a place to eat steamed crabs. The outdoor area has a happy hour vibe, and cocktails flow faster than the waters of the nearby harbor. But once you sit down and focus on the menu, you realize that this is a crab house, after all. Before the steaming shells arrive, your table will be covered with brown paper and the proper tools will appear – a mallet, a knife, and even a shell cracker (for those more used to eating lobster). While we waited for the crabs (from Louisiana on our trip and local when available) to steam, we dug into a decent mound of seafood nachos filled with grilled fish, shrimp and a barrier. Our half-dozen large, covered J.O. seasoning, examples were usually plump, but one was light, so the kitchen threw in an extra crab.

If your crabs here taste like some of the freshest shellfish you’ve ever had, that’s because they’re probably literally straight out of the water. Owner Tony Conrad—a triple-threat waterman, restaurateur and entrepreneur (who recently expanded to Harford County)—likely just stepped off his boat after a morning of catching crustaceans on the bay. There are so many reasons to come here, from the free bucket of popcorn to whet your appetite to the amazingly delicious salads (crab houses don’t usually shine) to the case of delicious sweets ( strawberry shortcakes, tiramisu) or the update. cantaloupe crust. But we are separating. It’s really all about those delicious Maryland crabs, which come hot, plump, coated in their own proprietary seafood mix, and proudly piled on a plastic tray.

Prepare To Pay Up To Fulfill Your Craving For Crabs This Weekend

Crab Takes: In the mood for DIY? Conrad’s has its own seafood market in Parkville, where you can buy live crabs to steam at home. While you’re there, grab a homemade crabby pretzel or a pound of spicy steamed shrimp to go.

Since 1971, Costas has been a founder of the local crabbing circuit and, in many ways, is a crossroads of Baltimore, hosting everyone from families just leaving a church service to port work moving in for half a dozen hard shells after the move to couples enjoying a date night. The diner-like menu also showcases a variety of foods that have colonized the eastern reaches of the city—things like Italian lasagna, Greek gyros, and, you guessed it, several crab dishes. Everywhere you look, there are vintage photos of Lexington Market and Preakness, and televisions to watch everything from NASCAR to Orioles games. Indeed, there is

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