Soft-shell crabs were invented in Crisfield MD. Well, OK, they were invented by the crabs themselves but the harvesting and marketing of them as a food item began in the Chesapeake town. It’s a very delicate process because, if left in the water, a crab’s new shell begins to harden about two hours after shedding its old one. Frozen and cleaned soft-shells are, of course, available year-round but live ones, which are definitely superior, can be obtained only from late spring into early fall. As you might imagine, getting them from the water to the cook alive, and before a new shell has formed, is no small endeavor. Yet the process goes on because the creatures are so darned delicious (and strikingly easy to eat compared to their well-armored brethren). Continue reading
USA Today’s 10Best has got a mess o’ polls going on right now, many focused on regional food specialties across America. In each category, a team of experts has selected 20 candidates, and it’s up to you to choose the winner. For instance, in the category of Best Po’ Boy in Louisiana, one of our favorite spots, Parkway Bakery and Tavern in New Orleans, is currently leading the vote tally, which will continue to accumulate until May 9th. Continue reading
For the 45th consecutive summer, the Union Mills Homestead will be hosting their annual Old-Fashioned Corn Roast Festival. The date is Saturday, August 1st, from 11 a.m. until 5 p.m. Local corn roasted in the husk over coals is really something special, and your meal ticket gets you all the corn you care to eat! Along with that corn: fried chicken, applesauce, sliced tomatoes, roll and butter, and iced tea or lemonade. Continue reading
This past winter we popped into Frangelli’s Bakery in Philadelphia to try their donnoli — that’s a donut filled with cannoli cream. Alas, they were out, and we returned home with a fine selection of “regular” donuts, which included a dossant (like the trademarked Cronut). Little did we know at the time that their jelly donuts are a force to be reckoned with. Frangelli’s jellies were just named one of America’s top 12 donuts by The Huffington Post (full disclosure: the story’s writers are from Philly). Continue reading
The dining room is packed and virtually every table is covered with brown paper and Callinectes sapidus in various stages of disassembly. These are old-hand locals, capable of locating the choice crab nuggets while devoting only half their attention to the hard-shelled creatures, the other half devoted to watching their beloved Orioles clobber the Red Sox on one of the TVs perched on the walls around the dining room. We love tearing apart steaming hot Old Bay-plastered crabs as much as the next guy but, today, we’re feeling lazy, and tired from the long drive. So crab cakes it is, without shame. Continue reading
A new Tony Luke’s, popular South Philly purveyor of cheesesteaks and Italian roast pork sandwiches, will be opening on 33rd Street in Ocean City, Maryland in May. The restaurant will remain open year-round, i.e., it’s not a summers-only venture as is the practice of many businesses in Ocean City. Read more in this DelmarvaNow story.
Attman’s Deli on Lombard Street in Baltimore turns 100 years old this year. Today’s Attman’s is famous for their sandwich menu but what most fans don’t realize is that, for about the first 50 years of its existence, Attman’s was really a Jewish grocery that fixed the occasional sandwich for those customers who asked. It was founder Harry Attman’s son, Seymour, who turned it into a true restaurant in the ’60s. Continue reading
Garden & Gun is running a bracket competition between 32 Southern barbecue joints, covering pretty much all the regional traditions in Southern Q. We didn’t do the detailed work to know for sure but it appears that every Southern state is represented in some way, which is as it should be. First round voting is going on now. Our pick for most evenly matched first round battle: Kreuz of Texas vs. Craig’s of Arkansas. Biggest mismatch: Lexington of North Carolina and Chaps Pit Beef of Baltimore. We like pit beef just fine but we don’t see it lasting long among these heavyweights.
We love to try the local cuisine when we travel — we’re LAFers, after all! — but it would be nice to have at our fingertips a list of the best burgers, dogs and, perhaps, pizza, wherever we might be. So, while we crave steamed crabs plastered with Old Bay, crab cakes with big pearlescent lumps, and Maryland crab soup with a kick, we also enjoy the occasional palate refresher when we’re in Baltimore, and a hunk of crusty, flame-cooked beef, as served by Kooper’s Chowhound Burger Wagon, fits that bill perfectly. The trick is in finding it. Continue reading
Corned Beef Row. The name designates an area that was once the center of Jewish life in Baltimore. Today, Corned Beef Row consists of Attman’s Deli and little else. Seymour Attman, longtime owner of the deli, has passed on but the deli continues. This once thriving Jewish neighborhood can today seem a little intimidating to some, but a daytime trip to Attman’s (the only time it’s open) will make it worthwhile. Continue reading