December 28, 2007

Wakefield's King Crab Meat

As New Year's Eve, with its traditional parties and celebrations grows near, many are thinking about the food to serve at their gatherings.

Appetizers, canapes, and hors d'oeuvres are common accompaniments to the the New Year's Eve or New Year's Day menu. A popular ingredient choice for appetizer recipes has always been crab meat.

Recipes for Serving Wakefield's Fresh Frozen Alaska King Crab Meat (not dated, 20 pages) is a small recipe booklet containing several such recipes.

Wakefield Seafood was founded in 1945 by Lowell Wakefield, a pioneer in the marketing of frozen Alaskan King Crab. The Wakefield's brand was very successful up during the 1950s up until the early 1960s. In 1968 the company was sold to Hunt-Wesson.

Their frozen product was sold to the consumer in two forms: 12-oz. packages of crab leg sections cut into serving size portions and 6 oz. packages of generous sized pieces of pure crab meat. The rectangular packages were a familiar sight in the frozen foods sections of the supermarkets.

Although the booklet is not dated, it shows the two digit postal code of 66 for their Seattle, Washington office. This system was phased out entirely by 1963 and replaced by the five-digit zip code, so the booklet was published sometime before 1963.


Defrost and drain 1 6-oz. package of Wakefield's fresh frozen King Crab Meat. Arrange crab meat sections on lettuce leaves around edges of 4 small serving platters. In the center of each plate, place small paper cup containing King Crab Meat Dip. Serve as first course or dinner. To serve before dinner, arrange on one large plate.


1/3 cup mayonnaise
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 tablespoons finely chopped celery
1/2 teaspoon finely chopped onion
1/4 teaspoon salt
dash of paprika

Mix ingredients thoroughly and put in paper cups. One package of Wakefield's King Crab Meat and one recipe for Dip makes 4 portions.


1 6-oz. pkg. Wakefield's fresh frozen King Crab Meat (defrosted and drained0
2 tablespoons finely chopped celery
1/2 teaspoon finely chopped onion
2/3 cup mayonnaise
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon paprika

Mix mayonnaise, celery, onion, lemon juice, salt and paprika. Add chopped King Crab Meat. Place in bowl in center of tray. Surround with potato chips or crackers.

The front of the booklet contains a little bit of background on the company:

An Amazing Fish Story That Really Happened!

"The Giant King Crab is a fabulous creature weighing as much as 24 lbs., whose legs may have a tip-to-tip span of 6 feet! The meat of the King Crab has a flavor and texture all its own--people everywhere agree there is nothing to equal it. But bringing it to you with its sea-fresh flavor and goodness intact, from 200 feet below the surface of the Bering Sea off Alaska--one of the most remote and stormy bodies of water in the world--presented a problem. Captain Wakefield solved it by building and outfitting a fleet of trawlers, with enormous nets to drag the sea bottom, and especially designed stainless steel equipment for the job of cleaning, cooking, quick-freezing and packaging the catch at sea, all within a matter of minutes. The fleet's home port is Seattle, Washington, 2,000 miles from the fishing grounds, where boats and crew stay out 3 months at a time. It is this hazardous, pioneer venture that makes it possible for you to enjoy Alaska King Crab Meat at its sea-fresh best. You'll find it in the frozen food cabinet at your grocer's."

You can read more about Lowell Wakefield and Wakefield Seafood here.


At 6:36 AM CST, Blogger T.W. Barritt said...

Hmm - now you've got me thinking I should head out and pick up some crab meat before the ball drops tonight! Happy New Year, Kathy!

At 6:28 PM CDT, Blogger Mike Nemeth said...

Thanks for the post. My grandmother Jessie W. wrote most of the recipes because when Wakefield's debuted, nobody knew what to do with king crab.


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