Crab Imperial {Happy Birthday, Mom!}

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Today is a very special day.  It is my mom’s birthday!  After loosing her earlier this year, today seems bitter sweet.  We can celebrate her and her time here on earth, but we can’t celebrate with her. And that hurts. She was such a wonderful woman.  She was so happy and full of life.  I miss her every day and  I really wish that she was still here.  I know in my heart she is in a much better place than this earth, but it it still very hard.

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So, today, in honor of my mom and her birthday, I’ve made one of her favorite meals: Crab Imperial!  We either ate this, or crab cakes for her birthday each year.  What can I say?  She was a crab-loving lady!

Here in Maryland, crabs are king.  And no, I’m not talking about King Crab. I’m talking about Maryland Blue Crabs.

These guys. {Source}

It is not a rare occasion to see piles of these guys steamed and covered in Old Bay and poured over a newspaper lined table during the summer.  Crab feasts are the best!

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But when you take that succulent crab meat, douse it in a tangy, creamy sauce and bake it up, you get something really special.

Serve-to-your-in-laws-to-impress-them special.

Make-it-for-your-boyfriend-and-he’ll-propose special.

Birthday special.

Happy Birthday, Mom!  I love you.

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Crab Imperial

Adapted from Philip’s Crab Imperial recipe

Makes 4 servings

Print this recipe!


For Crab Imperial

  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • Juice of 1/2 a lemon
  • 1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp Old Bay seasoning
  • 1 tbsp melted butter
  • 24 oz Blue Crab meat (Note: Crab meat is expensive!  Especially jumbo lump meat, which is really what you should use for this dish.  Use as much lump meat as you can, and for the rest, use either “special” or “claw” meat.  I used 8 oz lump meat, and 16 oz. claw meat)

For Imperial Sauce

  • 1/4 cup mayonnaise
  • Juice of 1/2 a lemon
  • 1/2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/2 tsp Old Bay
  • splash of milk
  • paprika


  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. In a large bowl, combine all ingredients for Crab Imperial, except for the crab meat.  Mix well until they are smooth.
  3. Gently add crab meat to the bowl.  Remove any small shells that you feel with your hands.
  4. Fold in crab meat until it is coated evenly with the sauce.
  5. Divide crab mixture into 4 oven-safe ramekins.
  6. Place ramekins on a baking sheet and into the oven.  Bake for about 15 minutes.
  7. Meanwhile, combine the ingredients for the Imperial sauce.
  8. After crab imperial has baked, divide the sauce among the ramekins.  Sprinkle the tops with paprika and broil under high heat until tops are browned.

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