Shopping in a grocery store that you've never been to before is always an adventure. New store layout, new brands that you might not have seen before, and yet another store card to sign up for in order to take advantage of the sale prices. When touring foreign grocery aisles, I can't help but look and see if there is a new crab cake offering (both fresh or frozen) that may that one secret find that will satiate my crab cake hankerings without having to go to a restaurant (which gets expensive after a while). One such trip introduced me to Handy crab cakes. According to their website, they are America's oldest seafood processor, who still maintains a plant in Crisfield, MD. Being a local seafood company, they should know a thing or two about crab cakes then. Do they? Let's find out!
Crab cakes come in a few varities, from regular crab cakes to gluten-free crab cakes, including crab & shrimp and crab & lobster cakes. Cakes are hand made with a minimum of ingredients, as evidenced by the ingredient list on the box (which does not appear to list any unpronouncable ingredients or preservatives). One other thing to apprecaite about the box is the fact that they have a window in the back so you can see what you are getting before you buy it.
There are a variety of cooking methods listed. The CCR chose to thaw and sautee one crab cake, while oven baking from frozen the other. You can also broil or deep fry, if that is your preference.
The cakes smell a bit fishy. Their web site does state they have moved their sourcing to Mexico and Asia, and the blue swimmer crab does tend to give off a fishy smell. There are some large lumps of crab in the cake along with some shreds, but not much crab flavor aside from the small bit of fishiness. The filler doesn't have much flavor either, but freezing foods without flavor enhancers will do that (which is why fresh is always better than frozen!). Slightly more filler in the cake than you would hope for.
The crab cakes turned out to be somewhat eggy inside, regardless of cooking method. (The house smelled like someone was cooking eggs during this review.) The sauteed crab cake had a bit more flavor than the oven baked one did, mostly due to the oil it was cooked in. Might help to brush the oven baked cake with some butter. Using lemon to help coax some flavor out of the cake did a tiny bit to help, but not much. Old Bay may also make the cakes palatable, but doesn't do much to cover up the fishy bits.
Have you tried Handy's Crab Cakes? Let us know in the comments!
- Restaurant Name: Handy Crab Cakes
- Address: Distribution may vary. Found at Weis in Laurel.
- Neighborhood: Laurel
- Restaurant Type: Retail
- Website: http://www.handycrab.com
- Review Date: 01/28/2012 8:38pm
- Item(s) Ordered: Crab Cakes
- Cooking Style: Broiled and Fried (1 each)
- Other Styles Available: No
- Available by mail order?: Yes
- Price: 7.99
- Order Type: Store Bought
- Crab Content: Mix
- Filler: Average
- Spice: Minimal
- Overall Impression: Mediocre
Rating (out of 5 crabs):