It is a question that is commonly asked of those of us who say that we are from Maryland - “don’t you just love eating crabs?” From my experience the reply is usually yes, absolutely, or for a few as long as the Rabbi is not around. Of course there can at times also be a caveat to their answer espoused by certain Free Staters.
The most popular of which that I have heard over the years is though one may certainly enjoy the sweetness of the succulent meat from the Maryland Blue Crab they just do not like the work necessary to pick it themselves.
One can see these types of crab connoisseurs at every seafood house in the Chesapeake Bay region, usually beginning in late May up until mid September, where they can be instantly spotted being passed portions of picked crab meat by their dining companion(s). While others seated at their communal table, itself shrouded in brown paper like that found at a butcher, are busily using knives or wooden mallets to extract chunks and flakes of meat from the back, cavity or claws of our native “beautiful swimmers” - Callinectes sapidus, these particular Blue Crab aficionados instead wait at the ready to be fed like a seal about to be tossed their next fish at Seaworld after having performed a trick for the audience.
At the end of the day’s dining experience it is those who did not crack, pick and dig for their meal that lack the crusted traces of Old Bay Seasoning in or around their fingernails nor do they have a yellow like sheen from the juices found inside of the crabs on their hands. No is all that they remain with is the lingering sweet taste of Chesapeake Bay Blue Crabs in their mouth and a set of fairly clean hands.
G J Gibson
Author's Note: this post was originally published on Tumblr May 23rd 2013
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