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Cooking with Rebecca Bent

Tuesday, September 23, 2008 is in Coastal Living’s October issue!

Chesapeake Bay-style Oyster Shooters

(Photo: Jean Allsopp)

This month Coastal Living wrote about in their Mid-Atlantic Seafood story and included three delicious recipes: Mini Surf-and-Turf Burgers, Down at the Shore Clam Boil, and Chesapeake Bay-style Oyster Shooters!

Celebrate with us and try our Chesapeake Bay-style Oyster Shooters. The recipe is below...

Chesapeake Bay-style Oyster Shooters
Makes 24 servings

You'll probably have extra Bloody Mary mixture after making these spicy shooters, so save it for the next time!

6 cups Bloody Mary Mix
1 teaspoon Old Bay seasoning (click here to purchase seasoning)
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
3/4 cup vodka
1/2 teaspoon hot sauce
2 dozen small to medium fresh oysters in the shell, shucked (click here to purchase oysters)

Combine first 5 ingredients in a large pitcher. Place 1 oyster in a cordial or shot glass. Top with Bloody Mary mixture.


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Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Crab Place in Oprah Magazine!

I want to express how proud I am that our Marinara Sauce with Maryland Crabmeat continues to garner great reviews!

Look for our mention in O, The Oprah Magazine in the “Food News” section of the October issue. O’s editors literally receive thousands of different food products to test, so it was really quite a thrill when they told us how much they loved it!

Here's the press release announcing the Oprah magazine review.

crab meat marinara

crab ballsThe recipe was brought to Maryland from the shores of Sicily years ago by my great-grandmother Sebastiana. She lived in a small town called Militello, where my uncle Joe still has a place called Bar New York, which serves everything from pizza to ice cream (working on getting him to offer our crab cakes!)

Click here to give our Crab Marinara a try!

militelloThe small Sicilian town Militello where it all started...

meatball and sauce contestWe entered a meatball and sauce contest! My grandmother, Josephina Concetta showing my daughters how to prepare the family Marinara recipe.
monga as a babyWhen my grandmother was little, her mother Sebastiana fed her Marinara sauce! So glad she did, because I learned the recipe from her.
cook talk
Visiting my Aunt Paola. She taught me a few tricks in the kitchen, so stay tuned for some new exciting products this fall!


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Sunday, September 7, 2008

Cream of Crab Soup Serves up Respect and Fond Memories

cream of crab soupAs the cool winds of the Fall make their way across the Chesapeake Bay it is not uncommon for a Nor’easter Storm to brew and strike unexpectedly. It’s these moments, after running from the looming squall to avoid the gallon rain drops that I find Creamy Crab Soup extra delicious!

I remember one such occasion as a kid. I was crabbing on our rickety pier on the Bay when a storm approached. We scrambled as fast as we could out of harms way up to the house. The noise of the wind was tremendous.

When we entered my grandparent’s shore house, my grandmother Edna had just finished preparing a pot of Crab Soup (from the crabs we had caught the day before.) Sitting on the porch still wet from the storm with a warm bowl in hand, I felt a strong respect for nature and its power. I could hear the waters of the Chesapeake Bay crashing on our pier which mere minutes before had been calm and inviting.

This recipe is based on my grandmother’s crab soup and ideal any time of day. It’s quite good spooned over rice, pasta, chicken, vegetables, or simply served in a bowl with a few crackers.

If you love crab soup, consider doubling this batch and freezing half: if properly stored, it will last up to 6 months. To serve, thaw the soup overnight in the refrigerator and reheat it on medium-low.

Creamy Crab Soup
Makes 4 servings
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 medium onion, minced
2 cup diced tomatoes (with liquid)
1 cups canned diced potatoes
4 cups vegetable broth
1 cup heavy cream
½ pound Backfin Crab Meat (click here to buy crab meat)
¼ pound Claw meat (click here to buy claw meat)
Salt and freshly ground black pepper Pinch of:
Nutmeg to make it more elegant or Seafood seasoning to make it more rustic (click here to buy our seafood seasoning)

Melt 2 tablespoons of the butter in a large pot over medium heat. Add the onion. Cook until soften, about 7 minutes, stirring every so often. Add in the tomatoes, potatoes, broth, and cream, and simmer slowly for 15 minutes.

Transfer the soup and the crabmeat to a standing blender and puree it thoroughly. (Be very careful when blending hot liquids in a standing blender—do not fill the blender more than halfway, and cover the lid with a towel. The heat will push the lid off and you’ll be wearing crab soup instead of enjoying it.)

Return the soup to the pot and the remaining butter. Boil it for 10 minutes. Taste for salt and pepper, and add a pinch of nutmeg or Seafood Seasoning. Serve immediately with a few crackers.

Don't feel like cooking today? We'll do it for you! Click here to buy our seafood soup!


Blogger Grace Piper said...

Great, evocative blog post and yummy recipe. I'll have to try this soon for an episode of my show. I found you through twitter. Thanks for the add in.

October 31, 2008 at 12:23 PM  

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Thursday, September 4, 2008

Award-Winning Crab Cakes

crab cake saladOur 100% Maryland Jumbo Lump Crab Cakes are award-winning and so delicious. has served close to half a million crab cakes nationwide. Watch the video below by pressing the play button to see Tonya and Rebecca talk about these amazing cakes and all the wonderful ways to prepare them...

By clicking here you can try our award winning crab cakes!


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Crab Balls: A Mini Bite Perfect for Any Occasion

crab ballsI grew up down at the shore on the Chesapeake Bay and some of my best memories there are about crab balls, or in my family pronounced something like creb bowls...

Crab balls were always on the menu when we had family gatherings because it is a bite-size morsel that can be popped in your mouth while still holding a drink. Now that being said, all drinks count, including fresh squeezed lemonade, which was also my favorite. Back then my beloved thing to do was stuff myself with as many creb bowls as I could get away with. I can still remember hiding under my twin aunts wedding party table with all my pockets fully loaded.

I think crab balls go especially well with a creation I call Sunset Sauce—which is basically a blend of cocktail and tartar sauce.

At your next party, consider these little gems. They are easy to prepare and you can do all the work well in advance and freeze them to be fried while frozen for 2 minutes, or until golden. Or even better, save yourself the time and just order our delicious and award-winning 2 ounce crab balls! We do all the picking and preparation for you. And as my grandmother once said, “creb bowls they are the best part of the crab!”

Crab Balls with Sunset Sauce Makes
6 to 8 Servings

For the Crab Balls:
1 large egg, beaten
2 tablespoons mayonnaise
1 cup breadcrumbs
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 pinch cayenne (if you like it spicy, an extra pinch, but be careful!)
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon coarsely chopped fresh thyme
1 teaspoon coarsely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
Optional: 1 teaspoon seafood seasoning
1 pound lump crabmeat, picked over for shells and cartilage (order here for crab meat)
Vegetable oil for deep-frying

For the Sunset Sauce:
1 cup Fancy Tartar Sauce
3 tablespoons Old-Fashioned Cocktail Sauce

In a medium bowl, combine the egg, mayonnaise, breadcrumbs, salt, cayenne, lemon juice, thyme, parsley, and optional seafood seasoning. Mix well. Gently fold in the crabmeat. Avoid over-blending. Form the mixture into 1-inch balls.

In a large heavy Dutch oven, heat 4 inches of oil until 320 degrees. Add a handful of the crab balls and deep-fry for 1 to 2 minutes, or until crispy.

Meanwhile prepare the Sunset Sauce. In a small bowl, combine the tartar sauce with cocktail sauce and stir until well-blended and pale orange. Drain briefly on paper towels and serve immediately with Sunset Sauce.

Here you can find all Crabplace seasonings & seafood sauces!


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Monday, September 1, 2008

Tonya & Rebecca discuss an Old Wife's Tale

tonya and rebeccaA long time ago, when my dad (Rebecca's dad) was a kid he recalled hearing this really interesting theory from his dad (who heard it from an avid Baltimore crabber, Mr. Freun) about the best way to catch Maryland Blue Crabs. The story goes that if you bury a chicken neck (or for that matter, any bait) in the ground for two days and then place it in your crab pot, it gives you an edge for catching crabs. Technically, the bait (after two days of no refrigeration) would have such a powerful aroma that the crabs would come from far and wide to feast.

Watch Tonya and Rebecca discuss the kind of bait they use in their crab pots and how we plan to get to the bottom of the old wife's tale of burying bait for two days to catch more crabs. Click on the "play" button to watch the video below.

If you want to try this crab theory on you own...tell us your results! And if you just feel like ordering some hard crabs, click here for hard crabs!


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Easy End of Summer Recipe: Reinvent a Favorite with Grilled Fish

grilled fishWith summer coming to a close, I have my sights set on finding the perfect grilled fish recipe. So, to get some ideas, I e-mailed everyone I knew for input. As I sifted through the responses, I discovered that all the suggestions had one recurring theme: stick to what you know and focus on the details to make a big difference...

Therefore, in the spirit of great advice, I decided to reinvent my favorite dish, The Caesar Salad. And accomplished that by topping the salad with grilled Rockfish and also making homemade baked chesse croutons and zesty Caesar dressing.

If you are serving this dish for dinner, consider a chilled sauvignon blanc or pinot grigio for white wine, or for red wine, room temperature Shiraz.

Caesar Salad and Grilled Fish and Crispy Croutons
Makes 2 Heaping Servings

For the Fresh Fish:
2 hearty 6-ounce fresh fish filets (I recommend: Striper –aka Rockfish in Maryland or Salmon. And we sell them both! Click here to go to the fresh fish web page.)

1 tablespoon olive oil
½ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon finely chopped fresh oregano

For the Crispy Croutons:
1 large slice fresh bread, just use your favorite, cut into ¼-inch cubes
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup freshly grated Parmesan
¼ cup finely chopped parsley

For the Dressing and Salad:
1 tablespoon anchovy paste
1 tablespoon garlic paste
1 teaspoon smooth Dijon mustard
Droplets of freshly squeezed lemon juice to taste
1 pinch freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 tablespoon freshly grated Parmesan
¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
5 heaping cups baby romaine leaves or 1 large head romaine lettuce, torn into bite size pieces
¼ red bell pepper, sliced into thin spears for garnish

Place the oven rack on the middle shelf of the oven and heat the oven to 400° F. for at least 10 minutes.

While the oven is heating up, prepare the fish for grilling. Heat a well-seasoned grill on medium heat. Place the fish filets on a clean place and drizzle them with olive oil, salt, and oregano. Place the fish, skin side down on the grilling grates and grill for 12 to 15 minutes or until its flesh turns opaque.

While the fish is on the grill, prepare the Crispy Parsley-Parmesan Croutons. Spread the bread out on a sheet pan and sprinkle it with olive oil and place it in the oven to bake for 10 minutes. The bread should start to toast. Once it does, remove the sheet pan from the oven and sprinkle it with the Parmesan cheese and the parsley (in that order) and place it back into the oven for 2 minutes, or until the cheese starts to melt and bubble slightly.

While the fish is grilling and the croutons are baking, prepare the dressing and salad. In a large bowl combine the anchovy paste, garlic paste, Dijon, lemon, pepper, salt, Parmesan, and olive oil and whisk until well combined. Add in the romaine lettuce and toss everything together until the leaves are well coated.

To assemble, evenly divide up the salad between two plates. Using a spatula, scrape off as much crispy parsley-parmesan croutons as you want and lay it on the mound of salad. Cover the croutons with the grilled fish filets and top it all off by garnishing the fish with a few spears of red bell pepper. Serve immediately.


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