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Author Topic: Taste Difference in Blue Crabs  (Read 20010 times)
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beach bum
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« Reply #20 on: August 18, 2005, 02:29:52 PM »

the chesapeake bay offers more areas for crabs to hang out,like coves and back streams wheras places like florida and jersey and such dont have much of a place to hide out and also don't have really much of a way for the water to cleanse itself.

Huh? Ever been to Florida?
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F.I.sherman
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« Reply #21 on: August 18, 2005, 08:27:53 PM »

yes,been to florida. very stagnate water.one of the reasons the water is so clear in florida is because there is little current to bring in fresh water.the only thing i will eat out of florida waters is mai mai.
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beach bum
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« Reply #22 on: August 19, 2005, 02:12:35 PM »

yes,been to Florida. very stagnate water.one of the reasons the water is so clear in Florida is because there is little current to bring in fresh water.the only thing i will eat out of Florida waters is mai mai.

Florida rivers are NOT stagnate they rise and fall with the tides just like the Wye, Patuxent and other Maryland rivers. And if you eat shrimp chances are you've eaten Florida shrimp. They're caught in the ocean, the gulf of Mexico AND the rivers.

BTW does Bernie Fowler still do his clear-water check every year in Calvert County? He used to wade into the Patuxent once a year to see if he could see his feet thru the muck. The water had been getting clearer and clearer every year, is this because the there is less and less current bringing in fresh water? I don't think so, it's because the health of the river is improving.

It's my opinion that Florida water is clear because it's healthy. And the only difference in the taste of Florida crabs and Maryland crabs is due to the salinity of the water. The Chesapeake Bay has just the right amount of salt to make the crabs delicious and sweet. But I've eaten Chesapeake Bay crabs for 50 years and can tell you there are differences in taste depending on where in the Bay the crabs are caught. A good example is the Wye River where the conditions are just right to make them the best of the best.

There is also a taste difference depending on the crab house that steams them. Like the one in Chesapeake Beach where the rat fell out of the ceiling, but that's another story.

However there are places here in Florida with the same salinity as the Chesapeake Bay. We have coves, bays, creeks and rivers that harbor crabs, the same species of crab as the Chesapeake and if they are harvested from a cove, bay, creek or river that has the same salinity as the Chesapeake they taste the same as the Chesapeake crabs, some are even as good as the Wye River crabs (but we don't ship these crabs north  Wink)

I'd still like to have a blind taste test. FRESH Florida crab against FRESH Maryland crab steamed the same way and see if you can tell the difference.

That's my story and I'm stickin' to it.   smug
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« Reply #23 on: August 19, 2005, 02:19:26 PM »


I'd still like to have a blind taste test. FRESH Florida crab against FRESH Maryland crab steamed the same way and see if you can tell the difference.

That's my story and I'm stickin' to it. smug


BB,

My brother lives in Fort Pierce, FL. I'll let you know the next time I head that way and we can test this theory. Wink
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« Reply #24 on: August 22, 2005, 10:49:30 PM »

Two:  I've noticed a difference in taste and meat consistency between South Jersey crabs caught in the ICW and Chesapeake Blues.  The Chesapeake ones are 'fuller' andhave a heavier meat and a sweeter taste.  I was wondering if anyone else found this to be the case or if I'm just imagining it.

I think "River Crabs" from Chesapeake Bay tributary's such as Chester & Wye are much sweeter than most and generally run alot bigger. I have not had FL or LA crabs but have had from the Ches Bay itself. Also back bays of Rehoboth, Indian River and OC,MD which I believe are similar to back bays of Jersey. Those back bay crabs are not so good for just steaming and pickin. Crab Cakes and dips yes.
You see alot of those folks breakem open and wash out the insides before steaming. hmmmm  When someone tells me they can't taste the difference between a good Chesapeake Bay or River Crab and one of those funky back bay crabs I think they must have eaten paint chips as a child. Maybe I should change my name to Crab Snob but he!! I think there is a difference between Ches Bay Crabs and the River crabs.
Chester and Wye River crabs are the best that this Chickenecker ever had!!!
« Last Edit: August 22, 2005, 10:52:03 PM by Chickenecker » Logged

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PotomacRiver
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« Reply #25 on: August 23, 2005, 12:54:32 AM »

Allow me to lay it down for all of you once and for all (smirk).  The reason that river crabs taste better is the fact that they come from a lesser water salinity.  There are several dynamics at work here. 

First and foremost, we must consider crabs from all around.  Southern crabs typically have a dryer flavor (locals say "no fat in that crab").  This is typically due to the high water salinity. 

Even crabs out of the Chesapeake Bay compared to a river have a different flavor.  some say iodine taste, some say just dryer.  No matter what, there aren't too many that can argue the fact that the southern crabs typically are dryer with less flavor (Florida & Louisiana notorious for this, yet they lack the cold spell to kill off the crabs, therefore they continue to shed year-round).

I have heard one theory behind why a river crab has a better flavor, and scientifically it makes sense.  As the male crab moves further upriver in search of the freshwater, he gives off pheromones to attract the female crab.

Either way it has to do with the salt content in the water.

FYI, as you have noticed by now my name is POTOMACRIVER.  I have to tell you that you are incorrect in your statement that the potomac is nothing but a sewage drain for DC.  While that is true in some respects, we can say that about the WONDERFUL PATAPSCO river, where the crabs glow in the dark from all the heavy metals dumped over the years by industry there.  Or perhaps the beautiful and pristine Patuxent River, with some beautiful crabs there.  No Commercial waterman wants to think his catch is tainted.  However, I have done MY homework.  I can tell you that the Patuxent Crab has been shown to have the highest level of PCB's in the hepatopancreas.

Back off the Potomac, it's the largest tributary of the chesapeake and it would take alot of [curd] in the water to get the levels higher than a little tributary with alot of induistry on it.

Next time do your homework before you go slamming a river that men make their living working on, myself included. Grin

ChickenNecker is SPOT-ON in his statement that Bay crabs taste worse than RIVER Crabs.

P.S.  The Wye River has some beauties, the only reason I am not there is because you can't make a living in April May and June, and thats when our price is good!

Good Luck out there, and stay away from the mmmmmmm.... the mmmmm..... the mmmm..m...m..m..mm.mm.mm.....the mustard.   Wink
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« Reply #26 on: August 23, 2005, 07:33:49 AM »

PR I understand what you are saying and love the river but also know from where I sit which is VERY close to where the Potomac and Shenandoah meet that alot of that water has issues.  It is a shame and it pisses me off but that doesn't change the fact that that water can be A LOT cleaner.

Let's face it you would be lucky to find any truly un touched water anymore.  I just wish people would think about what they are doing to the water when they go through their daily lives.
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kajuncrabber
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« Reply #27 on: August 23, 2005, 11:27:31 PM »

PotomacRiver,

             I understand you are a commercial fisherman and work the river. I also respect your opinions when it comes to something that happens in that river, because you work it every day. I have no Idea how dirty your river is, how much fresh water there is, how much salinity there is, because I would not speculate unless I know for sure.  This is what I do know, your quote about southern crabs having no fat in them, because of the high salinity is false. I am a commercial fisherman also, and I can tell you a little about southern crabs. They get just as big, as fat, and have good flavor when cooked right. I cooked some crabs sunday at a family get together no Iodine taste, and 80% had that yellow mustard fat you say southern crabs don't have.
             I respect your views on your situation about the Potomac, but the next time don't step on us Louisiana and Florida fisherman saying our crabs has no flavor and no fat. The only place down here where the crabs run less fat is in the fresher water. Come down south, and I would be glad to fix you up a batch of big fat blue crabs.  Smiley

kajun Smiley
« Last Edit: August 23, 2005, 11:29:28 PM by kajuncrabber » Logged

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