This Crab Soup is creamy, well seasoned, and has a real depth of flavour – a great dish to serve as a starter. Some of the best crabs come from the traditional fishing village of Salcombe Bay, in Devon, and if you can get one of these you will be following in the footsteps of generations of fantastic, rustic West Country cooks, making this soup in farms and inns. Salcombe Bay crabs tend to be large, and full of flavoursome meat, which is great for a soup meant for hungry people.
Crab Soup Recipe
Serves 4 people.
- 250g crab meat (Salcombe Bay Crab)
- 1 small onion (peeled and finely chopped)
- 15g butter
- 1 stick celery (trimmed and chopped very finely)
- 75g long—grain rice
- 600ml milk
- 600ml fish stock
- ground sea-salt and white pepper
- 1 teaspoons anchovy essence
- 1/2 teaspoon Cayenne pepper
- 2 tablespoons sherry
- 150ml double cream
If you are using a fresh crab, boil in salted water, and once cooked and cooled, strip out the flesh.
Melt the butter in a heavy-based saucepan. Add the chopped onion and celery and cook over a low heat for 10 minutes, until the onion is soft and transparent (do not brown). Add the rice and milk, bring up to the boil and cook for 20 minutes, until the rice is swollen and tender. Drain off through a sieve and reserve any excess milk in a bowl.
Reserve 3 tablespoons of the crab meat, (from the claws if the crab is fresh). Place the remaining crab meat, with the drained vegetables and rice, into a food processor and blitz on the pulse setting until chopped fine.
In a clean saucepan add the crab mix from the food processor, with the reserved milk, and add the fish stock. Season to taste with the ground sea-salt and freshly ground white pepper, bring to the boil and simmer for to minutes. Stirring frequently. Flavour with the anchovy essence and Cayenne pepper (add more or less to taste). Stir in the sherry and cream, (and add more milk if the soup seems too thick). Heat through without boiling, and serve at once in bowls, garnished with the reserved crabmeat.