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The crab thread


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#1 NewMarketSean

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Posted 04 June 2014 - 10:49 AM

Figured I'd start a thread about MD's favorite food -- when you have them, where, how much they cost, and if you caught them yourself, where'd you go and how many did you catch?

 

I haven't had any this spring/summer yet but I am getting the itch. Anyone know what the prices are currently?


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#2 Pedro Cerrano

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Posted 04 June 2014 - 11:03 AM

Not sure what the prices are.  A bunch of buddies want me to bring some up to Long Island this summer and cook them.  I've never cooked crabs before -- can I just throw them into a pot of boiling water?  Or do I need a special pot?

 

Also, there's no way I can keep them alive for the drive up there -- any recommendations?  Should I just make crab cakes instead?


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#3 Mackus

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Posted 04 June 2014 - 11:14 AM

I went to Captain James' dock last night for all-you-can-eat.  Was $30 for the crabs and they had $9 pitchers.  Ended up being about $50 per person all together.  Individual dozens of the various sizes were really expensive, so it likely only is worth the money for the all-you-can-eat.  Crabs were small and pretty light (except for one round they must've messed up and brought us larger ones) but they were tasty and cooked well.  I pick quickly, so was able to get through plenty of crabs and get my money's worth even with the smaller and less meaty ones.

 

You should be able to keep crabs alive for the drive to Long Island.  Just get a large cooler and I think you would be fine, I'm sure some quick googling on the how-to's can show you how to get them there alive.  You do need kind of a lot of equipment to cook them yourself, though.  You don't boil them, you steam them in large steaming pots on an outdoor propane stove.  You'll also need tons of JO seasoning, literally like a 5 lb bucket of seasoning for a bushel of crabs .  I've never cooked them myself, but I've been places where people were cooking them, and it's relatively simple once you have the equipment.  Maybe someone you're visiting in New York might have a steamer kit from steaming clams or something, which can work for the crabs.


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#4 JeremyStrain

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Posted 04 June 2014 - 11:55 AM

Not sure what the prices are.  A bunch of buddies want me to bring some up to Long Island this summer and cook them.  I've never cooked crabs before -- can I just throw them into a pot of boiling water?  Or do I need a special pot?
 
Also, there's no way I can keep them alive for the drive up there -- any recommendations?  Should I just make crab cakes instead?



Do not boil. Do not boil. Do not boil.

Steam them. Need a pot with a basket that sits out of the water. Throw a beer in there with some old bay for flavor. Doesnt take long.
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#5 DuffMan

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Posted 04 June 2014 - 12:28 PM

Not sure what the prices are.  A bunch of buddies want me to bring some up to Long Island this summer and cook them.  I've never cooked crabs before -- can I just throw them into a pot of boiling water?  Or do I need a special pot?

 

Also, there's no way I can keep them alive for the drive up there -- any recommendations?  Should I just make crab cakes instead?

Turn in your Maryland card right now!

 

Get a crap pot that has a rack that can fit in the bottom.   Here's a couple of examples

http://www.amazon.co...r/dp/B0001V04IQ

http://www.amazon.co...r/dp/B00006JEFH

 

 

Use a bottle of beer, a splash of vinegar and some water, as long as the liquid level is below the rack you're fine.  Forget the old bay and go with JO #2 seasoning.  Put on the burner,  when they're read they are done.  If you still aren't sure they done take out a claw and try it,   preferably one from the middle of the pat as those are usually the last to cook.  You can steam on the stove, but I prefer using a propane burner and steaming outside.



#6 Hooded Viper

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Posted 04 June 2014 - 12:48 PM

I live in Pasadena and when we get them from a place we usually get them from our local Seafood/Watering hole called Fifers.  Pretty reasonable and freaking awesome.  We just got 4 dozen mediums at $40 per dozen.

 

Usually however, my aunt and uncle live on the water and place 2 pots off their pier.  These generally pull in a bushell every couple of weeks.  Each week my uncle will pull them out of the pots and put them in his live box and then after each dinner my aunt will bring down the leftovers and feed them.  This gets them fat as hell and we steam them right there in the back yard, and drink a shit ton of beer.  There is NOTHING better.


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#7 DuffMan

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Posted 04 June 2014 - 12:52 PM

  You'll also need tons of JO seasoning, literally like a 5 lb bucket of seasoning for a bushel of crabs .  I've never cooked them myself, but I've been places where people were cooking them, and it's relatively simple once you have the equipment.

For someone  that's so handy and does so many home improvement type projects I'm surprised you've never steamed your own crabs.  Your advice is pretty spot on though,  except I will say that if you get a 5lb bucket of seasoning that will hold you for a while,  at least several bushel.  Personally I don't like to put a ton of seasoning on them anyway as it takes away from the taste of crab.



#8 JeremyStrain

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Posted 04 June 2014 - 12:55 PM

3 doz sm/medium for $75 at shoreline in Crofton. That was a couple days ago though.
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#9 Oriole85

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Posted 04 June 2014 - 01:02 PM

No secret way to steam crabs here. I always enjoy going to my uncles in Owings Mills 1-2x a summer with almost everyone on my mom's side of the family, sitting on his deck, having a crab feast while the O's game is on..


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#10 NewMarketSean

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Posted 04 June 2014 - 01:05 PM

I live in Pasadena and when we get them from a place we usually get them from our local Seafood/Watering hole called Fifers.  Pretty reasonable and freaking awesome.  We just got 4 dozen mediums at $40 per dozen.

 

Usually however, my aunt and uncle live on the water and place 2 pots off their pier.  These generally pull in a bushell every couple of weeks.  Each week my uncle will pull them out of the pots and put them in his live box and then after each dinner my aunt will bring down the leftovers and feed them.  This gets them fat as hell and we steam them right there in the back yard, and drink a shit ton of beer.  There is NOTHING better.

 

Believe it or not my parents and family used to vacation on the Magothy River. Seems silly now since it's Severna Park and a residential neighborhood, but back in the day it actually felt like vacation. It was this rustic old clapboard house, single level, build out back of the owners house. We did the same thing. 5 traps tied to the pier, and we could catch 2-3 dozen over a weekend, keep them in the live box, and then steam them up our last day there. It's one of the best memories I have of childhood.


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#11 NewMarketSean

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Posted 04 June 2014 - 01:06 PM

For someone  that's so handy and does so many home improvement type projects I'm surprised you've never steamed your own crabs.  Your advice is pretty spot on though,  except I will say that if you get a 5lb bucket of seasoning that will hold you for a while,  at least several bushel.  Personally I don't like to put a ton of seasoning on them anyway as it takes away from the taste of crab.

The more seasoning the better, IMO.

And J&O is definitely the best way to go.


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#12 Mackus

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Posted 04 June 2014 - 01:06 PM

For someone  that's so handy and does so many home improvement type projects I'm surprised you've never steamed your own crabs.  Your advice is pretty spot on though,  except I will say that if you get a 5lb bucket of seasoning that will hold you for a while,  at least several bushel.  Personally I don't like to put a ton of seasoning on them anyway as it takes away from the taste of crab.

 

I just don't have the equipment (or really have the room in my rowhome to store the equipment if I bought it).  I definitely want to give it a shot.  I greatly prefer buying steamed crabs and eating them at my or a friends backyard to going out for all-you-can-eat.  Getting live crabs and steaming them myself would just be the next step, and I'd really enjoy getting to try that.

 

Gonna try and borrow a steamer and do it sometime this summer, hopefully can make that happen.


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#13 NewMarketSean

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Posted 04 June 2014 - 01:07 PM

I went to Captain James' dock last night for all-you-can-eat.  Was $30 for the crabs and they had $9 pitchers.  Ended up being about $50 per person all together.  Individual dozens of the various sizes were really expensive, so it likely only is worth the money for the all-you-can-eat.  Crabs were small and pretty light (except for one round they must've messed up and brought us larger ones) but they were tasty and cooked well.  I pick quickly, so was able to get through plenty of crabs and get my money's worth even with the smaller and less meaty ones.

 

You should be able to keep crabs alive for the drive to Long Island.  Just get a large cooler and I think you would be fine, I'm sure some quick googling on the how-to's can show you how to get them there alive.  You do need kind of a lot of equipment to cook them yourself, though.  You don't boil them, you steam them in large steaming pots on an outdoor propane stove.  You'll also need tons of JO seasoning, literally like a 5 lb bucket of seasoning for a bushel of crabs .  I've never cooked them myself, but I've been places where people were cooking them, and it's relatively simple once you have the equipment.  Maybe someone you're visiting in New York might have a steamer kit from steaming clams or something, which can work for the crabs.

My sister went there a couple weeks ago and said the same thing. Start out small but then they brought out bigger and heavier crabs later on. I'll have to check it out. I still want to go to LP Steamers too. Never been.


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#14 NewMarketSean

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Posted 04 June 2014 - 01:10 PM

My F-I-L and I usually go crabbing once a year -- shame it's only once -- in Sept/Oct down by the Dundee Park off Eastern Ave. It can be hit or miss but when you hit that time of year, you hit. We caught a bushel of L/XL year and steamed them up...they were the sweetest, heaviest crabs  I've ever had. Simply amazing.


I never had friends later on like the ones I had when I was twelve. Jesus, does anyone?

#15 DuffMan

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Posted 04 June 2014 - 01:36 PM

Nothing beats sitting around with friends/family eating crabs, drinking beer,  and watching the O's.  Good times.

On a related note it's a good idea to go with a beer that's a bit hoppy.  I'm not talking about any kind of hop bomb, but an ESB, Pale Ale, or a session IPA are good beers to drink with crabs.  The bitterness is a great contrast to the seasoning and helps clean the pallet.


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#16 Hooded Viper

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Posted 04 June 2014 - 02:05 PM

Believe it or not my parents and family used to vacation on the Magothy River. Seems silly now since it's Severna Park and a residential neighborhood, but back in the day it actually felt like vacation. It was this rustic old clapboard house, single level, build out back of the owners house. We did the same thing. 5 traps tied to the pier, and we could catch 2-3 dozen over a weekend, keep them in the live box, and then steam them up our last day there. It's one of the best memories I have of childhood.

 

Oh man there are still a ton of properties like you described around town and in Severna Park.  They go for rediculous amounts of money when being sold too.  In fact, we are looking to buy a small place like that and demolish the house and get a nice, medium sized, house built on the water.  Then I'll start having my own pots, live boxes and memories :smile:



#17 DuffMan

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Posted 17 July 2014 - 12:55 PM

Got homefrom the beach this past Saturday.  And on Sunday I picked up some live crabs to steam for my family and have my parents over since they watched our dog for us while we were gone for a week.  Got 3 dozen crabs around 1130.  Kept em cool in my basement til I was ready to steam them.  3:30 rolls around so I start putting them in my pot.  I'm counting as a go just to make sure I got my three dozen,  I get to 24 and then I look in the bag and see it's empty.  Bums forgot a dozen crabs!  Call the place up and thankfully they've still got live crabs and they say I can come by and get my other dozen, go to pick them up and they don't even offer an apology.  I was annoyed by that as well.  On the plus side all of the crabs were full and tasted great!



#18 Oriole85

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Posted 17 July 2014 - 01:07 PM

Got homefrom the beach this past Saturday.  And on Sunday I picked up some live crabs to steam for my family and have my parents over since they watched our dog for us while we were gone for a week.  Got 3 dozen crabs around 1130.  Kept em cool in my basement til I was ready to steam them.  3:30 rolls around so I start putting them in my pot.  I'm counting as a go just to make sure I got my three dozen,  I get to 24 and then I look in the bag and see it's empty.  Bums forgot a dozen crabs!  Call the place up and thankfully they've still got live crabs and they say I can come by and get my other dozen, go to pick them up and they don't even offer an apology.  I was annoyed by that as well.  On the plus side all of the crabs were full and tasted great!

Should've not only offered you an apology, but given you something on the house.

 

A few months ago, I got sick from the pizza place I went to. I let the place know about this, not really expecting anything more than an apology. They gave me a $25 gift card and told me, even if I didn't feel comfortable ordering the pizza, to order a pasta or something. I was very impressed by the handling of this.

 

Glad the crabs were good atleast.


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#19 tennOsfan

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Posted 18 July 2014 - 08:09 AM

It's on my bucket list to someday experience picking thru a bunch of crabs in Maryland.  Ate plenty of crab cakes, but I haven't made the jump to the real deal.



#20 SportsGuy

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Posted 18 July 2014 - 08:29 AM

Crabs are really bad this year....they need to tell people they can't crab in the Bay for a few years(at least)...All of them are coming from down south and they are really expensive this year.






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