Seafood Preparation and Handling Guide

Seafood Handling and Preparation guide

Whole Maine Lobsters: Steamed lobsters should be microwaved for 1-2 minutes(mins.) to warm back up. Lobsters should be used the same day they are received. If they can not be used they can be frozen. Freezing may change the texture of the meat slightly, this is normal.

Lobster Rolls: Thaw the roll and lobster meat. Toast the roll and add butter to your liking. You can serve the lobster roll cold with the toasted roll or you can microwave the lobster meat for 30 seconds and serve hot.

Steaks: Steaks should be kept in freezer until they are ready to be used. Steaks should be thawed overnight in the refrigerator. Steaks should be removed from vacuum seal bag and allowed to sit out for 30 mins. at room temperature. (This will allow color and texture to return to the steak.)

Crab cakes: Crab cakes can be placed on a nonstick oven sheet for 20-25 mins. at 350 degrees F(fahrenheit), or until golden brown. Crab cakes can be lightly covered with melted butter or margarine during cooking for optimal baking. Crab cakes should be stored in the refrigerator for no more then 1-2 days. For longer storage crab cakes can be stored in the freezer, crab cakes can remain in the freezer for up to 6 months.

Cleaned MD Blue Crabs: Allow cleaned crabs to thaw. Place 4-8 crabs on a dish and microwave cleaned crabs for 1-1.5 mins. Do not re-steam cleaned crabs! The top shell has been removed. Note: Resteaming a cleaned crab can cause for the meat to become dry.

Steamed Crabs:To reheat crabs bring your pot to steaming, then add crabs for 4-7 mins. You want to use a rack to keep the crabs above the water level. DO NOT TRY TO BAKE CRABS IN OVEN! You may want to add additional seasoning for extra flavor. Caution: do not over steam crabs to avoid drying them out. Blue crabs can also be reheated in the microwave: 6-8 crabs for 1-2 mins. Time can vary depending on microwave; claws can be reheated the same way. Steamed crabs can be kept in the refrigerator in a sealed bag upside down. Note: They should not be placed in the refrigerator while crabs are still warm, only at room temperature. Crabs should be used within 24 hours of receipt to ensure freshness.

Crab Meat: Crab meat should always be kept refrigerated and should be used within 3-4 days. It is additionally recommended that the crab meat be placed in a tub of ice to ensure safe keeping. After 3-4 days, crab meat should be frozen to ensure safe handling, this can be frozen for approximately 6 months.

Blue Crab Claws: Should be kept refrigerated for no more then 2 days until you desire to use them. It is best to eat crab claws cold, but if you desire to eat them warm, then microwave the claws for 1-2 mins.

Live Crabs: Dozens should be steamed for 16- 19 mins. Half- Bushels should be steamed for 19-24 mins. Bushels should be steamed for 24- 28 mins. All steam times are averages and vary depending on amount of steam and size of pot. live crabs should be steamed immediately upon arrival!

Sea Scallops: Our fresh scallops are able to be stored in the refrigerator for approximately 2-3 days. If you desire to keep them longer then 2-3 days then they can be frozen. Scallops can be baked, broiled, sautéed, or fried. In baking, broiling or sautéing, scallops will turn from translucent to a pure white color when they are ready to serve. To fry scallops they should be dipped in milk, or egg-cream mixture and gently rolled in bread crumbs, and fried until bread crumbs turn golden brown. 

Shrimp: Raw shrimp can be stored in the refrigerator on ice for up to 2-3 days. Shrimp should be steamed for 3-5 mins. Steamed shrimp are best eaten cold, but can be microwaved for 2-3 mins.

Lobster Tails: Lobster tails should be kept frozen until you are ready to use them. Before thawing the tails the vacuum packaging should be removed. You can thaw frozen lobster tails by placing them in the refrigerator a day prior to cooking. To quickly thaw the tails they may be placed in a plastic container with warm water. Cut the top of the shell off your tail using a pair of kitchen scissors. Pull the tail out of the shell so half of the tail is above the shell. Lightly cover the tail in melted butter and bake at 400 degrees F, for approximately 15-35 mins., or until meat has reached a nice white color.Note: Larger size tails may need additional cooking time. Cutting the tail down the middle will allow the tail to cook more evenly. Add butter to suit taste preferences.

King Crab,Snow Crab,Dungeness Crab,Stone Crab: Crab legs must be stored in the freezer until you are ready to cook them. Crab legs should be steamed for 5-6 mins. depending on quantity and the amount of steam being used. If you do not have a steam pot available, then crab legs can be boiled for 5 mins.

Oysters: Fresh shucked oysters: Should be refrigerated as soon as receiving and used by the date on the container.

Live oysters: Should be stored uncovered and kept in the refrigerator on ice and used as soon as possible. Oysters whose shells are open prior to any cooking should not be consumed! 

Live Clams: Live clams should be cooked within 24 hours of receiving. Clams should be stored in your refrigerator, uncovered; additionally they can be covered with a damp rag.Clams whose shells are opened prior to any cooking should not be consumed! Clams should be steamed for approximately 3-7 mins, or until they open.

Mussels:To ensure safe shipping and handling mussels are precooked and shipped. They can be microwaved for 1-2 mins., or re steamed for 2 minutes to warm up. If the mussels are open, or closed they are fine as they are pre-cooked.

Soft shell crabs: Soft crabs can be kept in the refrigerator for 3-4 days. Any longer length of time and they should be stored in the freezer. Sautéed: Soft crabs can be sautéed in a pan at medium heat with garlic butter until red develops on the shell and the underside develops a slightly golden color. It is optional to bread the soft shells prior to cooking. The crabs can be dipped in a mixture of egg and cream, or milk, then placed in a batter mix of your choice.

Fish: Fish should be used within 2-3 days of arrival. It should be kept on ice in the refrigerator. Fish can be baked in the oven at 350 Degrees F until the fish has an even color throughout. Fish can also be breaded and pan fried until entire fish has an even color.

Soups: Soups should be used within 2-3 days of receiving the order. Soups should be kept in the refrigerator until use. Soups are bested heated in a saucepan on a stove.

Shrimp Wraps: Should be baked at 375 Degrees F for 12-15 mins. or until golden brown.

(Warning: consuming raw, or under-cooked foods greatly increases your risk of food borne illness. Note: All steaming times and cooking times are estimates and can vary by amount of product(s) and the steam generated from your steaming pot. The amount of time you are able to hold product(s) are estimates and may vary, It is a good idea to use all seafood products as quickly as possible to ensure its quality and freshness. This food handling guide is a list of generally accepted practices of the seafood industry and further information can be obtained through your local department of health.)