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One thing we always wonder here at the CCR is just how good a retail crab cake can be as we are roaming the grocery store aisles. One past reviewee was Bloom, a niche chain of supermarkets operated by Food Lion (AKA Food Kitty). The ones in a past review were the ones you could get fresh at the seafood counter. Shop a little further, perhaps into the frozen food aisle, and on your way to Ben and Jerry's latest flavor, you might just notice the Taste of Inspriations crab cakes. Calling. Beckoning. Wanting to jump into your shopping cart. And then you think, "What would the CCR do?" Well, the CCR has been in that predicament. (Cherry Garcia and Half Baked, if you must know) And those Taste of Inspriations cakes did fall into our cart. How were they? Read on and see how it went down!
The Taste of Inspirations box claims that these crab cakes are hand-made with 70% blue swimming crab, bread crumbs, and a savory blend of seasonings. The actual ingredient list says they are made from cooked crab meat, salad dressing (a sort of lemon garlic vinageratte), cracker meal, liquid whole egg, modified cornstarch, sugar, cellulose gum, salt, spices, dry mustard, cayenne pepper, and paprika. Package contains 6-2oz crab cakes and are considered to be hor d'oeuvres.
Cooking instructions are to bake from frozen at 400 degrees F on a lightly oiled sheet (middle rack) for 22-25 minutes, or until lighly golden brown on the outside. No other method is stated, other than not recommended for microwave.
The cakes smell a bit fishy coming out of the oven. Lots of crab lumps in addition to broken pieces within the cake itself. There is a decent amount of moisture with a bready texture. But, the crab tastes like you are eating a mushy fish sandwich. The spicing is on the bland side, which really doesn't do much to help the fishy taste. Blue swimmer crab typically doesn't have any flavor at all, so for these to be a bit pungant is a bit of a surprise (and a bit suspicious). The crab texture is borderline rubbery and almost dry, which goes for both the broken bits and the crab chunks.
Needless to say, the fishy smell and taste makes these a real loser. If you really need crab cakes, go back to the seafood counter and get the freshly made ones. These may have found tastes from inspriation, but they may have been from the wrong sources.
Have you tried Taste of Inspriations' Maryland-Style Crab Cakes? Let us know in the comments!
- Restaurant Name: Taste of Inspriations
- Address: Distribution may vary. Bought at Bloom in Odenton, MD
- Neighborhood: Odenton
- Restaurant Type: Regional Chain
- Website: http://www.shopbloom.com/Explore/OurBrands/TasteOfInspirations
- Review Date: 12/13/2011 12:44pm
- Item(s) Ordered: Maryland-Style Crab Cakes
- Cooking Style: Oven Baked
- Other Styles Available: No
- Available by mail order?: No
- Price: 13.99
- Order Type: Store Bought
- Crab Content: Lump
- Filler: Average
- Spice: Minimal
- Overall Impression: Stay Away
Rating (out of 5 crabs):