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Happy Hour: Crabcake standards

Happy Hour:  Crabcake standards

Happy Hour: Crabcake standards

So, it’s hard to be from Maryland and not have an opinion or preference about crabcakes.  Marylanders are pretty hard core about their crabcakes, and everyone likes theirs a certain way.  Some like a lot of spicy filler to bind the crabmeat together.  Others like minimal filler.  Some require huge amounts of Old Bay seasoning.  Other recipes call for just a pinch of the ubiquitous local seafood flavoring mix.  Some swear by deep-fried versus pan-fried.  For others, only broiled will do.

Every year, new “best of” or “top 10” lists come out of the best crabcakes in the state.  We can get pretty creative with how we present our crabcakes.  I’ve seen them plunked right on top of all sorts of baked shellfish.  There are crabcake melts–think grilled cheese sandwich with a crabcake in the middle.  I’ve even seen them as a Bloody Mary garnish!

If a Marylander dares to order a crabcake from a restaurant in any other state, they are usually sorely disappointed.  The results tend to be made with mere flakes of crabmeat, too much filler, and wrong flavoring.

Crabcakes are serious business in Maryland.  Don’t mess.  Period.

As for me, I love them made with all lump crab meat, minimal filler, and broiled.  I like a lumpy, not too creamy texture, with a slightly crisp exterior.  I like mine roughly the size of a softball.    Faidley’s crabcakes in Baltimore’s historic Lexington Market is by far the gold standard for me.  They make their award-winning crabcakes by hand the same way every day since 1886.

Faidley's Seafood crabcake

Faidley’s Seafood crabcake

I can’t always get downtown, so my next favorite crabcake is from The Corner Stable.  They have two locations in Cockeysville and Columbia.  The picture below was taken at the Columbia location.  The Stable also has some pretty awesome Stable Fries.  And ribs too.  But that’s for another post.

broiled crabcake from The Corner Stable

broiled crabcake from The Corner Stable

I’ve been to a lot of the other iconic crab houses in the state, and will certainly get to more that I haven’t tried yet.  Still, Faidley’s and The Corner Stable are unbeatable for me.

But I’m up for a challenge.  Tell me where you get your hands-down favorite crabcake.  I’m always happy to try a new place, even if it’s not in Maryland.  Bring it on.  🙂

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