Virginia crabs and scrapple

Tracie B and I flew into Baltimore late last night from Austin and stayed at an airport hotel. The hotel was full of soldiers and sailors who had literally just arrived back in the States from their tours of duty in Iraq. We shared a beer with some of them in the hotel bar. Man, were they happy to be home. It was at once moving and joyful to share a drink with them. They were all very sweet to us and seemed eager to chat.

Here are some scenes from our drive down to Richmond, Virginia today, where my cousin Lizzie is getting married in a few hours.

crab1

Charlies Crab House
633 White Oak Rd
Fredericksburg, VA
(540) 371-9988

crab2

Take out only…

cake2

Crab cakes at 2400 Diner in Fredericksburg. Made with sage. I don’t know if that’s the typical herb used to make crab cakes but they were good.

scrapple

Eggs over easy, grits, and scrapple (believed by some to be an American original) at the 2400 Diner. I’d never heard of scrapple before. From Wikipedia:

    Scrapple is typically made of hog offal, such as the head, heart, liver, and other scraps, which are boiled with any bones attached (often the entire head), to make a broth. Fans of scrapple sometimes boast that scrapple contains everything from a pig except the “oink.” Once cooked, bones and fat are discarded, the meat is reserved, and (dry) cornmeal is boiled in the broth to make a mush. The meat, finely minced, is returned, and seasonings, typically sage, thyme, savory, black pepper and others are added. The mush is formed into loaves and allowed to cool thoroughly until set. The proportions and seasoning are very much a matter of the region and the cook’s taste.

Tracie B warned me not to eat it (she knows all about my delicate “Jewish boy” stomach) but I just couldn’t resist. It was delicious…

9 Responses to Virginia crabs and scrapple

  1. John says:

    As I’m sure others will remind you, scrapple is an American original, deriving from Pennsylvania Dutch (i.e. German) country. From my experience, you’ve got to get the cornmeal mush just right so that the loaf sets firmly. And, of course, proper scrapple must be sliced and fried in pork fat. Now, as to wine pairing . . . . To my taste, a wine rich in tannin and high in acidity. A Syrah, perhaps American to match the dish, like Clendenen Family Rancho La Cuna (90%/10% Syrah/Viognier) or, higher up the food chain, Colgin Cellars Syrah IX Estate.

  2. genevelyn says:

    Next time y’all are in my hometown, be sure to let me know. I’ve got something in my basement (to drink) that goes with scrapple.

  3. Adam Caperton says:

    Sorry we could not get together in RVA, maybe next time… BTW… You haven’t lived until you have had scrapple…

  4. Joe Herrig says:

    Gotta love a bushel of blue crabs…one of my favorite summertime meals. Have also wanted to try scrapple for a long time. Glad to hear it’s delicious (pig parts…was there any doubt?!)

  5. Jake Skakun says:

    Mmmm Scrapple. I think I’d give it a shot as it looks pretty good. I probably wouldn’t tell my girlfriend what she was eating until afterward.

    The wine pairing is tricky – I think John has a great suggestion with Syrah. Another suggestion… soft, smokey red fruits, good acidity – Rosso di Montalcino. Castelnovo does a good one at a good price.

  6. Do Bianchi says:

    @John I’m glad to see that you’ve caught the blogging bug! Someday we will eat scrapple together! I’m thinking that a juicy Primitivo di Manduria might pair well…

    @Genevelyn and Adam Tracie B and I were in town for less than 24 hours. I so wish I could have connected with both of y’all but our work obligations made it impossible to spend any time there (we flew in and out of Baltimore!). But thanks for the invitations! We’ll take you up on those some day.

    @Joe that crab shack was the REAL deal. I only wish we would have had the time and means to eat some crab (you can’t really eat them in the car). The scrapple was great though!

    @Jake good Rosso di Montalcino goes great with nearly everything! Thanks for reading…

  7. Wayne says:

    No offense, gang, but I’ve tried Scrapple. I tried it many yars ago, and it was disgusting. I never wanted to know exactly WHAT IT WAS, and after I read how it’s made..
    Now I know why it’s NASTY.

  8. Enzo says:

    ciao , sono Enzo e scrivo dall’italia . volevo sapere se era possibile avere forniture di scrapple in italia , quanto costa con spese di spedizione . grazie

    hello, I am Enzo and I write from Italy. I wanted to know if it was possible to have supplies of scrapple in Italy, how much with shipping. thanks

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