The Taste: Krave Courtyard & Their Eastern Shore Crab Frittata Recipe
May 26, 2017 09:00AM ● Published by Arden Haley
Krave Courtyard • 12 West Dover Street, EastonBy Rita Calvert // Photography by Tony Lewis, Jr.
What’s not to love about this little spot sandwiched just off the main Easton drag, on a side street across from the courthouse? Although the brick courtyard—still charming with the wrought iron furniture—was sleeping on this chilly day, inside Kerri Albright had special touches like fresh flowers on each table, mason jar drinking glasses, and a baking pan of Caramelito Tarts ready to go in the oven! Kerri took a baking break to chat with me.
How long have you owned Krave Courtyard? Give us an overview of the history.
I always loved the Krave location and especially the courtyard as I frequently walked by when visiting Easton. In September 2015, I saw a [closing] sign posted on what was then the Wildflower Cafe! I quickly called the owner of the real estate and took over the business by October. I spent six months renovating the interior and making changes to the outside and even more to the interior.
Before moving to Easton, I owned and ran Kerri Out Food in Severna Park for 11 years. My husband is from Easton and his father has owned a business here for 30 years. We wanted to stay close to his family and experience a smaller town so we decided to buy a historic home right in downtown Easton. Our home is within walking distance of Krave Courtyard and school for our two children. I had partnered with April Cunningham in Severna Park, as I wanted to spend more time with my growing children. I sold Kerri Out to April and put my energies into Krave Courtyard.
How would you describe your food?
Our food here is homemade, comfort food, and as fresh as we can make it. We offer focaccia bread for the sandwiches and make that here. We roast the turkey breast and beef for all dishes. Dressings are homemade, as are the entrees and soups I sell fresh frozen in the “Krave and Take” freezer. Chicken Potpie, Lasagna, and Seafood Casserole are some of our offerings. Not only is the food comfortable, but the atmosphere is as well. I know most of our customers by name.
Was food a big part of your upbringing? Did you cook when you were a kid?
Food was a very big part of my upbringing since my grandmother and mother were excellent cooks. Although my mom worked full-time as an attorney, she made dinner every night and we sat down as a family to eat. When I was in middle school she began to encourage me to make some parts of the meal. I loved it and was drawn to the savory dishes. I still use my mom’s lasagna recipe here in Krave for the entrees-to-go. My older three siblings were the ones interested in sweets and making cookies.
After college I was working in Austin, Texas, and decided to go for a two-year culinary degree as well, which certainly taxed my schedule. After returning to Maryland, I worked with Main Ingredient for a year and then opened Kerri Out.
Fresh seems to be the adjective folks use for your food. Are you using seasonal and locally grown food?
I use as much local food as possible and get to know more farmers in the area all of the time. The Easton Farmers Market is a fabulous way to meet the growers and customers. Our eggs come from Front Yard Farm, crabmeat from Dorchester Crab Co. and Gay’s Seafood. I use a meat distributor who supplies a good bit of local meat, raised without pesticides. We brew Rise Up Coffee and stock Scottish Highland Creamy Ice Cream. I make ice cream pies from this incredibly good ice cream in three different sizes.
Since Krave Courtyard is a small place, what are some of your creative ideas to keep folks coming in?
Our courtyard is full to overflowing in nice weather, but cold weather creates some challenges. In winter we provide free delivery in Easton for lunch, we have offered Wine Paint Night, Birthday Party Brunch and Tea, and private special events. Since we’re across from the courthouse, people have been asking me to have their reception here after the wedding ceremony!
I am active on social media to let folks know all about our events. I’m going to start Happy Hours with local music, beer and wine, which should bring a lot of people to our charming garden courtyard.
What do you love about Easton?
We love the history here, the civilized small town feeling and the friendliness. With a nine- and seven-year-old, I meet all of the families. The farmers market is great as are all of the farmers in the area. I love that I can own an informal food business next to the courthouse, near many real estate offices with Talbot County Tourism just up the street to direct folks to my place!
Eastern Shore Crab Frittata
Serves 8 to 12
A frittata is quite simply a lighter version of a quiche without a crust. And is a perfect meal for breakfast, brunch, lunch, or dinner. It can be filled with any combination of ingredients. The base we use at Krave is egg, milk, some sort of cheese, salt, and pepper. It’s a perfect use of leftovers too, for example if you have leftover chicken sausage from dinner the night before, chop it up and add to a frittata base with tomato, fresh basil, and shredded Parmesan cheese. Voila, a new meal is made!
This recipe, which serves 8 to 12 people or more, can also be cut into small wedges or cubes and served as hors d’oeuvres.
- 12 Frontyard Farms eggs
- 1/4 cup milk
- 1/2 pound lump crabmeat
- 1 pint grape tomatoes, halved
- 1 cup shredded Fontina cheese
- 1/4 cup fresh chives, minced
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- Splash of fresh lemon juice
Heat the oven to 375 degrees. Prepare a 9 x 13 pan by coating the bottom and sides with non- stick spray or softened butter.
Mix eggs in a bowl, add the tomatoes, crab, cheese, chives, and gently stir together. Add the milk, lemon juice, minced garlic, and kosher salt. Combine all of the ingredients and pour into the prepared pan. Make sure to give it another stir in the pan to distribute the ingredients evenly.
Bake in oven for 20 to 30 minutes, making sure to check on it after 20 minutes, if the top is getting too dark, but it isn’t cooked through put a piece of foil over the top to keep it from getting any darker.
Once the frittata is cooked through remove from the oven and let rest for about 15 minutes before removing it from the pan.
I like to turn it over onto a cutting board and cut it into the size I need for my meal. If you would like to warm it up a bit more after slicing, line a baking sheet with parchment paper, place the pieces of the frittata on the pan and pop it in the oven for 5 to 7 minutes. Serve hot.