Maryland's annually plundered crab population may be getting its silent revenge on our hearts.
Baltimore's signature dish, the crab cake, appears as No. 7 on Fitness magazine's list of the 10 most unhealthy regional dishes in its September issue. It clocks in at a disturbing 340 calories and 14 grams of fat.
"Crab cakes are getting a bad rap because most of them are fried," said Liz Smith, a dietitian with Mercy Hospital's outpatient program. "And most people like to season them with Old Bay, which really adds to the sodium content."
Smith advises that crab cakes be broiled, and seasoned with something other than Old Bay. She also noted that crab meat by itself is "high in protein" and "not too bad on fat."
For those who can't do without the hot grease and Old Bay, even their traditional crab cake is not close to competing with the Fitness list's worst diet killer: Philadelphia's famous gut bomb, the cheese steak, easily topped the list with its 887 calories and 46 grams of fat.The rest of the list:
* Louisville, Ky.'s, Southern fried chicken: 590 calories/30 grams fat
* Los Angeles' California burrito: 550 calories/22 grams fat
* Dallas' rib-eye steak: 510 calories/27 grams fat
* New Orleans' gumbo: 477 calories/32 grams fat
* Juneau's baked Alaska: 380 calories/12 grams fat
* Baltimore's crab cakes: 340 calories/14 grams fat
* New York City's bagel with cream cheese: 340 calories/11 grams fat
* Boston's cream pie: 282 calories/14 grams fat
* Chicago's deep-dish pizza: 280 calories/13 grams fat
Pub Date: 8/11/98