Crab Bisque

As with any soup this is infinitely adjustable.
Iíve noted below ingredients that I feel could be easily adjusted to meet your tastes without compromising the overall quality of the soup.

Ingredients

2      TbspOlive oil 
1/2cup diced Shallots 
14      ozSan Marzano Tomatoes  
1/2cup Medium-dry Sherry (I like Dry Sack)
6      cups Fish stock (You can by this premade) * See below for recipe
1/2 Lemon juiced
2      cups Heavy cream(adjust to taste)
2      tspFresh thyme 
2      tspSalt(adjust to taste - you can add more at the table)
1/4tspCayenne pepper(adjust to taste - .5 is usually more than enough)
1      lb Cooked lump crab meat (check it over for any bits of shell)

Directions

  1. Place a large heavy bottomed pot over medium heat.
  2. Add olive oil and shallots, stirring frequently until the shallots are softened - about three minutes.
  3. Next add the tomatoes, and sherry (be careful when adding alcohol with an open flame) and simmer while stirring for about two minutes.
  4. Add fish stock and lemon juice to the pot.
    Turn down heat to maintain a gentle simmer, and cook for fifteen minutes, allowing the flavors to develop.
  5. Reduce the heat to low, and add in the initial quantities of cream, thyme, salt, and cayenne pepper.
    Stir to combine, and then taste - adjusting the ingredients as necessary until it is flavored to your liking.
  6. Once the broth is finished add in the lump crab.
    Stir the soup and cook for five minutes, or just until the cream and crab are warmed through.
    Turn off the heat and serve immediately.

Serves 10


Fish Stock

Ingredients

4      pounds fish frames (bones)from sole, flounder, halibut, and/or turbot, cut into 2-inch pieces and rinsed clean of any blood
1/2cup dry white wine  
2      quartswater(approximately)
2      medium onionsvery thinly sliced
4      stalks celeryvery thinly sliced
2      medium carrotsvery thinly sliced
2      driedbay leaves  
25      cup Italian parsley leavesfresh, roughly chopped
6      sprigs fresh thyme  
2      Tbsp black peppercorns  
*       sea salt 

Directions

  1. In a 7- to 8-quart stockpot, combine the fish bones, white wine, and just enough water to cover (you wonít need the full 2 quarts of water here).
    Bring to a boil, skimming off the white foam from the top of the stock as it approaches boiling, then reduce the heat so the stock simmers.
    (Using a ladle and a circular motion, push the foam from the center to the outside of the pot, where it is easy to remove.)
  2. Add the onions, celery, carrots, bay leaves, parsley, thyme, and peppercorns and stir them into the liquid.
    If the ingredients are not covered by the liquid, add a little more water.
    Allow the stock to simmer gently for 20 minutes.
  3. Remove the stock from the stove, stir it again, and allow it to steep for 10 minutes.
    Strain through a fine-mesh strainer and season lightly with salt.
    If you are not going to be using the stock within the hour, chill it as quickly as possible.
    Cover the stock after it has completely cooled and keep refrigerated for up to 3 days, or freeze for up to 2 months.
  4. For equipment, you will need a 7- to 8-quart stockpot, a ladle, and a fine-mesh strainer.