University of Delaware
The Crab Cake Cook-Off and Seafood Chowder Challenge are always popular events at Coast Day. Photo by Evan Krape

Coast Day flavors

Seafood is on the menu at University's Coast Day, Oct. 2


1:50 p.m., Sept. 20, 2011--Whether you’re an aspiring chef in search of new recipes or a seafood lover with a taste for a classic crab cake, Coast Day has something for you.

A free event now in its 35th year, Coast Day will be held Sunday, Oct. 2, rain or shine, at UD’s Hugh R. Sharp Campus in Lewes from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. It is sponsored by the College of Earth, Ocean, and Environment and the Delaware Sea Grant College Program.

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The wide range of seafood-themed events at Coast Day includes a series of culinary presentations that demonstrate how to make delicious recipes. Kicking off that series will be John Sapienza of SJ Foods LLC in Georgetown, Del., who will show how to prepare rockfish, oyster, and wild mushroom carbonara at noon. At 1:30 p.m., Tony Hilligoss, chef instructor at Parkside High School in Salisbury, Md., will show guests how to make mussels IPA with roasted garlic and mussels Provençale. And at 3 p.m. Gretchen Hanson of Hobos Restaurant in Rehoboth Beach, Del., will demonstrate how to cook smoked porcini scallop carpaccio.

“The cooking demonstrations are a great way to learn new approaches to cooking seafood,” said Doris Hicks, seafood specialist with Delaware Sea Grant and organizer of all the seafood-related activities at Coast Day. “And since the recipes are usually easy to make, they’re something you can use at home.”

Two of Coast Day’s most delicious traditions also are on the schedule: the Crab Cake Cook-Off and the Seafood Chowder Challenge. The annual Crab Cake Cook-Off will get started at 11 a.m. with eight finalists preparing recipes in their quest to make “Delaware's Best Crab Cakes.” A pre-selected panel of three judges will evaluate entries at noon, and the winners will be announced at 1 p.m.

The Seafood Chowder Challenge begins at noon and features a friendly competition between the ACF First State Chefs Association and the Delmarva Chefs and Cooks Association. Visitors will be invited to sample a 2-ounce portion of each association’s chowder and then vote for their favorite. The winner will be named at 3 p.m. Clams, donated by Seawatch International Inc., in Milford, Del., will be the featured seafood in this year’s chowders.

A large variety of seafood also will be available for purchase, including seafood soups and chowders, and crab-cake and soft-shell crab sandwiches. Non-seafood items also will be available. Coast Day visitors are advised that there is no ATM on campus grounds.

Coast Day is supported by DuPont Clear into the Future, Gamesa Corp., NRG Bluewater Wind, OSG Ship Management Inc., UTEC Survey Inc., Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control, WMDT CW-3, Lewes Historical Society, Lewes Chamber of Commerce, PNC Bank, and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

The full Coast Day program is available on the event website at For more information about Coast Day, visit the website or call 302-831-8083. 

Note to the UD community: Free bus transportation to Lewes from Newark will be available for UD students and employees. Learn more

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