Urban Crab Shack

the beauty and delectability of eating steamed crabs in maryland

The Beauty and Delectability of Eating Steamed Crabs In Maryland

The Beauty and Delectability of Eating Steamed Crabs In Maryland

If you are a traveler or someone who loves the sea, then you have probably sampled extraordinarily different types of seafood from region to region.  One sea creature that is certainly considered a delicacy is lobster.  North America in general is a great place to start if you are looking for that tender crustacean.  The US and Canada harvest about half of the world’s lobsters.  The New England region of the US, and in particular Maine, have some of the tastiest, meatiest lobsters that can be found.  There are an infinite number of fish species that people enjoy dining on.  Of course salmon seems to be a crowd favorite in many parts of the world.  Salmon are usually found in cold weather destinations, especially Alaska, Canada, Russia, Scandinavia, and Iceland.  A nice grilled salmon with some lemon and rosemary might make any seafood lover’s mouth water.  Other types of delicious and popular fish include tuna, haddock, trout, cod, tilapia, and mahi-mahi.  In almost every country in the world that has a coastline, you can find fresh fish that can be grilled, broiled, fried, etc.

Here in Maryland, citizens and tourists alike devour steamed blue crabs, fresh from the Chesapeake Bay.  Urban Crab Shack, with locations in Brandywine and Parkville, offers some of the freshest blue crabs in the region, steamed, with plenty of Old Bay seasoning.  The crabs are generally 5 to 8 inches wide and are caught in local waters by hundreds of crabbers everyday.  It is estimated that there are 282 million blue crabs living in the Chesapeake Bay, and Maryland produces about a third of the entire nation’s blue crabs.  Weather and many other factors can contribute to the amount of crabs found in the bay year to year.  They like to congregate among the underwater grass beds.

After the crabs are steamed they turn from blue to a bright orange, much like a lobster.  Although crab cakes, Maryland crab soup, and cream of crab are popular dishes, steamed crabs still seem to be the most popular way to eat them.  If you grow up in Maryland, you are usually an expert in how to pick a crab at a very young age.  Summers are filled with the scent of old bay.  Crabs are also paired well with many types of sides, such as corn, potatoes, sausages, shrimp, even pasta.  Urban Crab Shack continuously provides their customers with some of the lowest priced steamed crabs in Baltimore County and Prince George’s County.

If you are not a local, the easiest way to describe how to pick a crab is to start by flipping it upside down, and starting with the body of the crab.  You want to open up the outer shell, which is made easier by nature’s can opener, a small lever-like part of the shell which when pulled, will open up the entire crab.  The next step would be to clean out guts and gills, or basically any parts that you don’t want to eat.  There is a softer part of the shell that holds the backfin meat.  Within that is where you should find some of the most delicious white crabmeat.  After you have picked the main part of the body, you can work on the claws.  They may need to be smashed apart with a mallet or carefully cracked with a crab cracker.  Either way, the larger the claw, the more likely there is a large amount of incredibly tasty crab meat inside.

Marylanders have turned the ritual of eating crabs into an art.  From the dazzling blue crabs turning orange when cooked, to the camaraderie of sharing crabs, to the extensive mess that you incur when eating steamed crabs, it is a careful symphony of the senses.  And you are rewarded mightily for putting in a few minutes of work.