I use the term “Chesapeake Bay Foodshed” to describe the region from which we source as much of our fresh food as possible. Foodshed is a play on the term “watershed,” and it’s no secret that the Chesapeake Bay watershed is in trouble.
Aside from a love of fresh oysters, crab and fish, I have strong personal ties to the Bay as well.
My mother’s ancestors were among the early settlers on Maryland’s Eastern Shore centuries ago. My husband and I were married on Kent Island, less than a mile from the creek bearing the family’s name.
On my dad’s side, he grew up in the District and no family gathering is complete without a crab feast. The day after our wedding, my Grandpop sat my poor Jewish husband down and said, “Now that you’re part of this family, you need to learn how to pick crab.” He was a good sport about it but still prefers to let others do the work. As for me, it just isn’t summer without a trip to Quarterdeck in Arlington for a dozen crabs on a humid evening.
If we’re going to continue to enjoy local blue crab, significant actions must be taken to clean up the Bay. The Clean Water Act is 30 years old. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) had a 2010 deadline to get the Bay off the “dirty waters” list, and has admitted they might not make it before 2020. If you caught last night’s “Poisoned Waters” documentary, you saw how drastic the decline has been for oysters (2 million bushels to 100,000 bushels a year) and fish (most species are already gone completely). The Bay can’t wait any longer! Please join me and fellow “Blog for the Bay” participants and sign the petition to the EPA Administrator urging them to avoid any further delay.
Blog for the Bay Round-Up: Please visit these other local blogs to hear more stories about what the Chesapeake Bay and its seafood mean to all of us, and chime in with your own stories in the comments or on your own blog. Check back here and at my co-host The Arugula Files for updated links later in the day. And please share on Facebook &/or Twitter (hashtag #blog4thebay), too!
- Arugula Files tells of an unsuccessful crabbing experience, and the iconic Cantler’s Riverside Inn. (And a previous post about the sustainability of Maryland’s blue crabs.)
- Capital Spice tells of a favorite market vendor, Chris’ Marketplace.
- The Green Phone Booth‘s JessTrev reminisces about roof deck parties and a soft shell sandwich to mark Bill Clinton’s inauguration.
- Capital Cooking Show‘s Lauren was recently introduced to blue crabs after moving here from the Midwest.
- Metrocurean used “pretty please with crabcakes on top” to beg favors from her father, and shares her grandmother’s crabcake recipe.
- Plight of the Pumpernickel gives a tutorial in eating those steamed blue crabs.
- DCist chimes in with a plug for the Maine Avenue Fish Wharf, and link to those terrific “save the crabs .. then eat ’em” ads of a few years back.
- Endless Simmer sees ulterior motives in our campaign. (Hey, we’re not denying our self-interest. Crabs are yummy!)
- Internet Food Association is stung by Old Bay and scary magic cards.
- Etsy Inspiration gives us a look at arts and crafts inspired by the Bay.