We LOVE the 50 nifty United States of this awesome country and believe each state is special. Every Monday we feature a sandwich unique to its state as part of our “50 Sandwiches, 50 States, 50 Weeks” series beginning with Alabama and ending with Wyoming.
Maryland is one of the few states that actually has an official state sandwich- well, not quite “official” yet, but given their list of “officials” like bird, dessert, drink, and crustacean, it stands to reason a state sandwich won’t be far along. Lawmakers are attempting to pass a bill to designate the soft shell crab sandwich to represent the great state of Maryland. And while lawmakers can rarely agree on anything unanimously these days, the choice for this sandwich wasn’t hotly debated in the state Senate as only one Senator objected to it. It didn’t go anywhere in the House in 2013 but will be back in debate in 2014.
Since the soft shell crab is almost the official state sandwich, you’re probably wondering why we’re featuring a crab cake sandwich. Simply put, I cannot get a whole, soft shell crab in Upstate, NY. The soft shell crab sandwich is a blue crab that has been fried and actually has the pincers and legs of the crab intact, sticking out the sides of the sandwich! Check out this picture from finecooking.com. Whoa! Did you get a little freaked out? You may be wondering how it’s possible to put a whole crab between two slices of bread and eat it- at least I was. Don’t they have a hard shell? Yes they do, but every year for six to eight weeks, beginning in May, they shed, or molt, their exoskeleton making almost the entire animal edible. And while it may become the state sandwich, the crab cake sandwich is apparently a more popular choice as the “whole crab” sandwich tends to frighten off some folks. This crab cake sandwich is simple to put together and the homemade sriracha tartar sauce is equally as easy and has a nice punch to it!
- 6 potato rolls
- 3 Tbsps. butter
- 1 lb. lump crab meat
- 1 cup panko bread crumbs, divided in half
- 2 eggs
- ¼ cup mayonnaise
- 2 Tbsps. Worchester sauce
- 2 tsps. Dijon mustard
- 1 tsp. Old Bay
- ¼ tsp. black pepper
- ½ cup mayonnaise
- 3 Tsbps.sour cream
- 2 Tbsps.relish
- 2 tsps. onion, minced
- 1½ tsps. sriracha hot sauce
- ¼ tsp. black pepper
- Mix crab cake ingredients together and set aside.
- Mix tartar sauce ingredients together and refrigerate until ready to use.
- Pour ½ cup panko bread crumbs in a bowl.
- Form 6 evenly sized patties and coat each side in the bread crumbs.
- Heat butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Fry the crab cakes about 5 minutes each side. Avoid moving them unnecessarily as they are delicate and can fall apart. Transfer cakes to a plate.
- Toast buns in the skillet, adding butter if needed.
- Place crab cakes on the buns and top with tartar sauce.