amonia smelling crabcakes?
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  1. #1
    TFer who Posts Some - Not a Tidal Fish Subscriber
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    Default amonia smelling crabcakes?

    Went out Sunday and got two nice bushel, the wife picked some meat and made crabcakes on Monday. They smelled and tasted like amonia, does anyone have a clue to why this is. We picked the meat Sunday afternoon, and I cooked them up as soon as we got home. This is a first for me any info would be appreciated.

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  3. #2
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    Default amonia smelling crabcakes?

    cooked too long?

    I've experienced this from storebought crabs, but just assumed they were dead when they were cooked.

  4. #3
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    Default amonia smelling crabcakes?

    Cooking a dead crab gives off an ammonia like smell.

  5. #4
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    Default amonia smelling crabcakes?

    I've never had "overcooked" crabs smell like ammonia. They will get mushy if overcooked but I've never smelled ammonia.
    Sounds like the crabs were dead and bacteria was getting to the meat.

    Either that or someone switched your vinegar and ammonia.

  6. #5
    Platinum TF Poster - Not a Tidal Fish Subscriber
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    Default amonia smelling crabcakes?

    If ya' ran the Pot dry while steaming,They will smell sorta like that.Don't ask why I know. [grin][grin]

  7. #6
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    Default amonia smelling crabcakes?

    As a kid I almost exclusively ate crabcakes when at restaurants......several times I can remember the very strong odor of ammonia coming from crab cakes.

    I have never come across the reason and hope that someone here might know.

    Mark

  8. #7
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    Default amonia smelling crabcakes?

    Maybe the crabs were not steamed long enough to kill all the bacteria.

    The ammonia odor is definitely an indicator of meat in a state of spoilage.

    Most likely not chilled quickly enough between picking steamed crabs and making the crab cakes.
    If the ammonia odor was present after cooking, it should have also been detected prior to cooking.

    Cooking will not cause nor eliminate the ammonia smell.

  9. #8
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    Default amonia smelling crabcakes?

    Several times I have had fresh picked crabmeat start to go bad within 2-3 days of picking and I could tell because when the crabcakes were cooking they smelled like amonia--its a product of protein decomposition.

    Seafood inspectors regularly take a few samples of "fresh seafood" and microwave them to cook and then smell for amonia--your nose knows!! Yes there are other ways to have amonia crabs, but if you know you cooked them alive and then the picked meat smells of amonia later on, the cooked meat went bad.

    Freshly cooked crabs should be picked while hot/warm or very soon after and then promptly chilled down. Also when picking crabs make sure you have very clean hands and don't let picked meat sit around warming up while you pick--place it regularly into the fridge during the picking process. I take about 4-6 crabs out of the firdge, pick them, bag the meat, and place in fridge, and then get another batch out to pick.

    Also, cooked crabmeat will keep better/longer if iced (ziplock bags of crab packed in ice) or placed in an especially cold part of the fridge (a good meat drawer or whatever). Most refridgerators are a bit warm and don't keep the temps at about 35 or a little below, that is the temp range where seafood should be stored.

  10. #9
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    Default amonia smelling crabcakes?

    Normally, when seafood goes bad it develops an ammonia type smell. Ammonia is nitrogen given off by growing bacteria.
    IMHO throw it away if it smells of ammonia.

    Old waterman showed me this. when checking crab meat, people open the top and smell. He showed me how to loosen the top and flip in over then raise the bottom so you can smell the meat on the bottom of the container. He said that is where the bacteria grow.

  11. #10
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    Default amonia smelling crabcakes?

    crabs that have died and gone bad give off an ammonia odor. It smells like used diapers when you open them after cooking.

    Crabs that have been keep on (in) ice and died recently do not give off trhe odor and are safe to cook and eat (although there are people who will say not to) Crab houses do it all the time.

    If your crab cakes smell of ammonia I would try the lamb...


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