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The Chesapeake Bay, the largest estuary in the United States, carves a wide-mouthed smile into the center of Maryland that nearly cleaves the Old Line State in half. The nation’s capital, Washington, D.C., while technically not part of Maryland, is nevertheless completely contained within Maryland’s border just across the Potomac River from Virginia. Maryland’s nickname the Old Line State refers to the American Revolution, when General Smallwood’s Maryland troops held the line against the British at the 1776 Battle of Long Island. Another Maryland nickname, the Free State, harkens back to the days before Prohibition, when a newspaper editor railed against outlawing liquor sales in a supposedly free state. For many food-minded folks, Maryland means one thing: the blue crab. This fast-moving crustacean ("the beautiful swimmer") populates the waters of Chesapeake Bay and features prominently in crab cakes and soups. Often it is simply packed with dry spices and steamed whole in beer. Many crab houses prepare their own spice blends. These spicy seasoning blends were influenced by former slaves of the Caribbean, who brought a taste for island spices with them.

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Featured Cook

Cooking Level: Intermediate

Living In: Potomac, Maryland, USA
About me:
I love to eat, but made no great effort to learn good cooking until I became my mother's caregiver. My recipe file is not huge, but it has a number of successes!

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Kristine Taylor 

Cooking Level: Beginning
Home Town: Hancock, Maryland, USA
Living In: Hagerstown, Maryland, USA
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Karen Minors 

Cooking Level: Expert
Home Town: Fort Washington, Maryland, USA


Cooking Level: Intermediate
Home Town: Baltimore, Maryland, USA
About me: Professional who loves to cook and bake...Yum!

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Newest Reviews

Easy Ham and Cheese Appetizer Sandwiches

Reviewed on Sep. 16, 2014 by Jennifer   view full review
These are great! Made them for the football game Sunday and they were a big hit. Made exactly...

Mom's Macaroni Salad

Reviewed on Sep. 16, 2014 by Jennifer   view full review
Fantastic! Tried this last night and I think I'm going to make this again today. Just...

Cabbage Jambalaya

Reviewed on Sep. 15, 2014 by ZAKKIE   view full review
I've had this recipe saved since 2003 and finally made it. It was OK but too many...

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