This flavorful crab soup is a rich and creamy combination of crab meat, mushrooms, and a variety of herbs and seasoning vegetables. A splash of sherry and a grating of nutmeg add subtle flavor to the soup.
If you're planning a special dinner party, consider this soup for the first course. Serve it in 1-cup portions in cups or small bowls. It's a fabulous luncheon—or dinner—soup as well. Serve it with a sandwich or tossed salad.
Homemade or purchased croutons make a tasty garnish for the soup or top each bowl with a buttered and toasted slice of French bread (crostini).
- 6 tablespoons butter (divided)
- 1/4 cup finely chopped onion (or shallot)
- 1/4 cup chopped bell pepper (finely chopped)
- 1 green onion (finely chopped)
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
- 1 1/2 cups sliced mushrooms
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1 1/2 cups milk
- 1 teaspoon salt
- Dash freshly ground black pepper
- Dash ground nutmeg
- Dash cayenne pepper
- 1 cup half-and-half (or light cream)
- 1 1/2 cups lump crab meat (fully cooked)
- 2 tablespoons dry sherry
- Garnish: croutons (optional)
- Melt 4 tablespoons of the butter in a heavy skillet or saute pan over medium heat. When the butter is hot and stops foaming, add the onion, bell pepper, and mushrooms. Cook until the onions are softened and translucent and the mushrooms are golden brown. Add the chopped green onion and parsley; continue cooking for 2 minutes longer. Remove the vegetables from the heat and set aside.
- Heat the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter in a medium saucepan over medium-low heat. Stir the flour into the butter until smooth. Continue cooking for 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Gradually add the milk while stirring or constantly. Add the salt, pepper, nutmeg, and cayenne pepper. Continue cooking until thickened, stirring constantly.
- Add the reserved sauteed vegetables to the saucepan along with the half-and-half or light cream; cook until hot and bubbly, stirring constantly.
- Stir in the cooked crabmeat and simmer for 5 minutes, stirring frequently.
- Add the sherry just before serving and stir to blend.
- Top the soup with purchased or homemade croutons.
Crab meat comes in a variety of grades, including jumbo lump, lump, special, and claw. Special and claw are ideal for soup and salads, while the lump crab meat is an excellent choice for crab cakes, dips, and casseroles. Jumbo lump is the premium grade and is best used in dishes where appearance is important, such as certain appetizers and sauteed dishes.
Croutons are easy to make at home with sliced bread and a little butter. Heat the oven to 350 F. Remove the crusts from 4 slices of day-old bread. Melt about 1 1/2 tablespoons of butter; brush over the bread slices. Cut the bread into cubes and spread out on a baking sheet. Sprinkle lightly with salt, if desired. Bake for about 14 to 16 minutes, or until browned. Let the croutons cool and serve them with the soup.
|Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)|
|Total Fat||46 g|
|Saturated Fat||27 g|
|Unsaturated Fat||13 g|
|Dietary Fiber||3 g|