Crabbing on the Eastern Shore
The Blue Crab makes its home here in the Chesapeake Bay — and aren’t we glad! The Bay is the main spawning grounds for these delicious crustaceans and we consume somewhere along the lines of 40 + million pounds a year out of the Bay!!! Blue Crabs go through three major cycles in their growth : peeler, soft-shell and hard shell and we harvest them at all three times. When we say harvest we mean one of two things: either we are bringing in crab traps or, just like when we were kids, we are spending the day on the dock, chicken leg tied to some line, and netting a couple dozen crabs while soaking in the sun. Because we are the home of vast stretches of estuary and wetlands, it is easy for us to get peelers and soft shells.
PEELERS: Just before shedding the crab is called a “peeler”.
SOFT SHELLS: Just after the crab sheds and for only a few hours it is a “soft shell” and is eaten shell and all. YUM!
HARD SHELLS: After shedding, “hard shell” blue crabs are the bounty of the Bay. We sprinkle them with McCorrmick’s famous “Old Bay” spice and steam them in beer, we pick them, we devil them and we make crab cakes. Some fancier folks even stuff their flounder with crab imperial.
Here are a few favorite shore recipes:
Tidewater Crab Cakes
Soft Shell Crab
Blue Heron Realty Company is a local, family-owned real estate firm specializing in prime waterfront land and homes located on the Eastern Shore of Virginia, the Chesapeake Bay, and Cape Charles.Copyright © 2017 Blue Heron Realty Co.