It occurs to me that the one Eastern Shore staple which didn’t really get a true cameo appearance in The Delaneys of Delaware was the tried and true Old Bay Seasoning. Now, while Old Bay makes more that just seasoning, which can be and is used on virtually everything you can imagine down in the slower lower, the seasoning is by my estimation world renowned. I’m going to fill you in on a few Old Bay classics, what many might consider odd uses, and I’m going to point you in the direction of some Old Bay merchandise for the diehard fans in the audience.
Old Bay chips. Holy collards, y’all! When MarshFox first introduced me to the Old Bay Crab chips, I thought I’d died and gone straight to junk food heaven. There may be several chip producers out there capitalizing on this concept, but for a true Eastern Shore delight, you absolutely must try the Crab Chips by Utz. Can’t eat just one will take on new meaning once you open a bag of these jewels.
Old Bay flavored microwave popcorn. I can’t even remember where I found this stuff, but I’m sure it was a one-off type situation. In fact, I can’t even recall the brand. Heck, it might have come from the local version of the buck an item store. All I know was my mouth jumped up and did a jig when I put this in it. This stuff is also called crab corn and you can make your own by melting some real butter and adding Old Bay to your taste to it before pouring it over your own freshly popped corn.
Aside from using it on all your seafood and crab cakes/balls, I’ve seen Old Bay used in several culinary ways. People sprinkle it in their mashed taters or sprinkle it on a baked tater. They season their flour with it before dipping and frying anything dipable and fryable. They use it in soups. Let us not forget to pay homage to the Old Bay peanuts. Heck, I’ve seen Old Bay flavored pickles, and I’d certainly be remiss if I didn’t mention the Old Bay caramel candies. To be perfectly honest, people from slower lower use it more like a condiment that a seasoning. Surely there is a Dr. Seuss type verse devoted to Old Bay somewhere?
Merchandise…How about some Old Bay socks? A tie? A tee-shirt? There are Old Bay themed latte mugs and reusable totes and hats. If you love Old Bay and want the world to know it, there is something out there for you. All of this and more can be found at Amazon.
What about you, my dear reader? Are you a fan of the spice? How do you use your Old Bay?