WAMU 88.5 : The Kojo Nnamdi Show

Old Bay & the Chesapeake's Identity

It's one of the flavors that defines life in the Chesapeake region: Old Bay Seasoning, the blend of herbs and spices that's been made in Maryland for nearly a century. In some ways, Old Bay is enjoying a renaissance; a Maryland brewery even recently released an ale brewed with the seasoning. But the company behind Old Bay itself, McCormick, is contemplating a move out of Maryland. Kojo explores the link between spice and regional identity - and what Old Bay has contributed to the culinary DNA of the Chesapeake region.

Featured Recipe: Steamed Crabs for 8

by Spike Gjerde/Woodberry Kitchen/Baltimore MD

This recipe calls for Old Bay or a housemade spice equivalent; Spike's spice recipe is also below.

Steamed crabs:
4 dozen large blue crabs from the Chesapeake Bay
4 bottles of beer + water
Old Bay or your secret recipe to taste

  1. Pour beer into a crab steamer/large pot with insert.
  2. Pour enough water in to fill up to right below insert.
  3. Bring beer and water to a boil.
  4. Layer in feisty (i.e. live) crabs with Old Bay and crab seasoning.
  5. Cover, and once steam builds up, cook for 20 minutes. Dump out on a newspaper covered table.

Spike's crab seasoning:
½ cup sea salt
3 tbsp black pepper corns
2 dried fish peppers
2 tsp mustard seed
2 tbsp dried lovage
Grind everything together in a blender.


Kentucky Boy Solves Rubik's Cube In Record Time

A 14-year-old boy from Lexington, Ky., has solved a Rubik's Cube in less than five seconds. As Guinness World Records declares this a record-breaker, we hear how NPR covered a Rubik's Cube competition in 1981.
WAMU 88.5

Recipes Get A Makeover With GIFs, Science, And Emojis

On Food Wednesday, we explore the new ways recipes are being presented, with everything from GIFs to scientific method.

WAMU 88.5

International Military Action In Syria

French President Hollande meets with President Obama in Washington to seek additional U.S. support in the fight against ISIS in Syria, and NATO holds an emergency meeting over the downed Russian fighter jet: An update on international military strategy in Syria.


Used Rocket Is A New Breakthrough For Blue Origin's Space Plan

Blue Origin, the space company founded by Amazon billionaire Jeff Bezos, has sent a craft past the edge of space and then landed its rocket safely – and vertically — in Texas.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.