Though Delaware is usually categorized as a mid-Atlantic state, its cuisine definitely leans toward the South. The most important influence on the local cuisine is the state’s coastline. Fish and shellfish, especially blue crabs, are common ingredients. Seafood is often simply steamed. Crabs in particular are frequently steamed whole and brought to the table for diners to crack, accompanied by boiled potatoes, corn on the cob, or both. More elaborate preparations like seafood bisques and hotpots are also common. So are fish cakes and crab cakes, fried patties made from seafood mixed with flour, breadcrumbs or cracker crumbs, egg and other binders, and seasonings. Crab dip, usually made of crabmeat, cheese, mayonnaise, and seasonings, is another southern-inclining favorite. The love of seafood notwithstanding, Delawareans also eat their share of meats like beef or chicken, most often stewed with vegetables and mild herbs. Fried chicken, a Southern staple, also comes to the table in Delaware.
Corn, common in most Atlantic states as well as in the South, is particularly popular in Delaware. The Native American vegetable medley called succotash is a common side dish, as are cornbread and corn pudding; cornmeal is also a common ingredient in crab cakes and the state dish, hush puppies. Other old-time favorites such as slippery dumplings, a wheat-flour dough poached in chicken broth or other liquid, also survive. In terms of sweets, pies like molasses-based shoofly and sweet squash pie are local favorites.
-World Trade Press