It’s been decades since we last steamed blue crabs. Last weekend we finally had the opportunity to put half a bushel in the pot and have our own personal crab feast.
I grew up looking forward to those rare celebrations of the “beautiful swimmers” as our Bay blue crabs are called. Simply prepared. Steamed in either vinegar or beer. Covered in Old Bay Seasoning.
Put the newspaper on the table, grab a mallet and a knife and get down to business. We have been enjoying the eastern shore crab houses the past few years. Not making the mess in the kitchen steaming them ourselves.
Now we have a neighbor who crabs every week and sells what he catches. We bought half a bushel of mixed size “sooks”, which are mature female crabs.
Cost us less than a pound of lump crabmeat costs these days. We ate a few dozen right from the pot, and then started picking crab meat to make soup and crab cakes,
The crab cakes were worth the time to pick all that backfin.
I made these in my cast iron skillet using browned butter to get them nice, crispy and dark.
We have until the end of the month to get more if we want to do this again. It’s been far too long and besides the little mess in the kitchen, they aren’t that hard to do.
Makes me remember growing up in crab country.