Paladini Potpie

Adventures within The Crust!


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Mrs. Spilman’s Crab Cakes

The T-shirt had a picture of the cutest little crab in the world, but it said “I’m crabby. Leave me alone!”  I usually don’t like to see kids wearing shirts that say things like that. I never, in all my born days, thought I’d be buying such a T-shirt. But there I was – the quintessential grandma – at the counter of the Baltimore gift shop buying, not one, but three of them!

One was for baby, Nathan, and a couple for Ethan and Angelina, who will hopefully be my grandchildren someday. (Their beautiful mommy is dating Matthew.)

I promised myself that I would tell the kids the shirts are not a license to be crabby. But they seemed like the perfect souvenir of our trip.

Marylanders love crab!

I think every restaurant in the Baltimore area serves crab in one form or another. Crab chowder, crab salad, or just plain crab. I didn’t actually see “crab legs and eggs”, but I’m pretty sure it must be served somewhere!

The Chesapeake Burger, or some other version of a crab cake on a bun, was on every hamburger menu right there along with the grilled chicken burger.
I was in heaven!

One high point of our visit was when Dan went to the drive-up seafood store and bought a half  bushel of deliciously cooked, whole crabs.

We piled them on newspaper down the length of the picnic table…What a feast!

But the crabby delight didn’t end with that! All week there was a little undercurrent of anticipation because Mrs. Spilman had promised to make crab cakes on her day off. I was really excited about that, since I’d been wanting a good recipe for those delectable crustacean creations!

And I wasn’t disappointed. Mrs. Spilman’s crab cakes were the best I have ever eaten. I appreciate her sharing the recipe with me, and thanks to Robin for taking all the great pictures of the preparation.

Mrs. Spilman’s Crab Cakes

3 cups (1 lb) cooked crab (canned crab works fine.)

1/3 cup fresh bread crumbs

2 Tbsp. mayonaise

1/4 cup diced green pepper

1 Tbsp. Worcestershire Sauce

2 Tbsp. snipped fresh parsley

1/2 tsp. dry mustard

3/4 tsp. salt

1 egg

ground black pepper to taste

about 3 Tbsp. butter

Mrs. Spilman had planned to use any leftover crab from our crab feed, but since there was not so much as a scrap or claw left, she used the canned variety.

Shred the crab meat into fine pieces


(You may notice that the large bowl Mrs. Spilman uses to mix her crab cakes is the very same bowl we used for the game of  celebrities.)

Add all the other ingredients except butter.

Mix well.

Divide mixture into eight portions, and shape into patties. (Mrs. Spilman made a double recipe on this occasion)

Melt the butter in frying pan and begin to fry the cakes when the butter is hot.

Flatten the cakes with the back of the spatula as they cook. Fry until nicely browned and crisp.

Mrs. Spilman served her crab cakes with delicious fresh summer vegetables.

The recipe for Mrs. Spilman’s Crab Cakes is featured in our new Paper Cookbook. You may order yours with the link at the bottom of this page.

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