There may be as many different ways to prepare crab cakes as there are people who love to eat them, but the University of Delaware wants to know your favorite way to make the savory seafood treats.
Enter your recipe by Friday, Aug. 15, 2008, to be considered for one of eight finalist positions in the 19th Coast Day Crab Cake Cook-Off. Finalists will compete for cash prizes, a plaque, and an opportunity to return as a judge next year. The contest will be held on Coast Day, Sunday, Oct. 5, at the University of Delaware’s Hugh R. Sharp Campus in Lewes, Del.
Sponsored by the Delaware Sea Grant College Program and the University of Delaware College of Marine and Earth Studies, Coast Day is an annual educational festival and showcase for Delaware’s rich marine resources. The event, which attracted a record 13,000 visitors last year, has won state and national awards for its efforts to promote environmental education and stewardship.
The cook-off is an opportunity for both professional and amateur cooks to celebrate the blue crab, one of Delmarva’s most valuable seafood resources. Past contestants have used all manner of names and ingredients in their quest to concoct the recipe that will win the coveted title of “Delaware’s Best Crab Cakes.”
Doris Hicks, seafood technology specialist for Delaware Sea Grant and organizer of the cook-off, said she hopes this year is no different.
“Be as creative as you want,” she said, explaining that previous contestants have used special ingredients ranging from cornmeal to lemon dill sauce. “Dress up a traditional recipe or develop a totally new one. The trick is to come up with a recipe that complements the crabmeat without overpowering it.”
All crab cakes must be made from 100 percent blue-crab meat. Each finalist will receive two pounds of jumbo lump blue-crab meat to use the day of the competition. All other ingredients and cooking utensils are the contestants’ responsibility. Judging will be based on originality, predominance of crabmeat, taste, and texture.
For a complete set of contest rules and an entry form, or for more information, visit www.deseagrant.org/coastday or contact Delaware Sea Grant at 302-645-4346 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Award-winning recipes from Coast Day’s first 17 years are published in a commemorative Coast Day Crab Cake Cookbook. The spiral-bound booklet costs $6. It will be available at Coast Day, or you can order one now by visiting www.ocean.udel.edu/about/giftshop.shtml or by calling 302-831-8083.
To learn more about the Delaware Sea Grant College Program, visit www.deseagrant.org. For more about UD’s College of Marine and Earth Studies, visit www.ocean.udel.edu.