Crab and Sweetcorn Soup
Anyone who subscribes to a veg box scheme spends August and September enjoying or enduring an endless supply of sweetcorn. Interestingly, here is another example of a seafood recipe where it is the partnering vegetable whose season drives the agenda. And curiously, it happens to be another dish of Chinese origin. Frozen sweetcorn will of course do, but why not make the most of the fresh stuff while it's around?
This is a very easy recipe and, for two servings, uses exactly one of the 150g tubs of white crab meat available on the stall practically all year round.
There must be hundreds of recipes for crab and sweetcorn soup, but this one is based on that by Simon Rimmer from the BBC's "Something for the Weekend". What I like about it is that the thickness of the soup comes from corn, with only a little assistance from cornflour, rather than the other way around.
Crab & Sweetcorn Soup
Ingredients (serves 2)
1 ear of sweetcorn
1 tsp sunflower oil + 1 tsp sesame oil
2 spring onions, white parts chopped, green parts shredded for garnish
Approx 1 tbsp fresh ginger, peeled and cut into matchsticks
150g white crabmeat
2 tbsp Chinese rice wine or dry sherry
400ml fish (or chicken) stock
½ tsp cornflour mixed to a paste with a little water
1 red chilli, finely chopped and/or sliced (quantity to taste), for garnish
3 tsp light soy sauce (or to taste)
Ground white pepper
Cut the kernels from the ear of sweetcorn. Place two-thirds in a small food processor with just enough stock to blitz to a coarse puree.
Heat the two oils and saute the chopped spring onion (white parts) and the ginger gently for about 2 minutes without colouring.
Add the sweetcorn puree, Chinese rice wine or sherry, soy sauce and the rest of the stock and simmer for 5 minutes.
Next add the remaining sweetcorn kernels and the cornflour paste and cook for 3 minutes, during which time the soup will have thickened.
Finally stir in the crabmeat just to reheat. Season to taste with white pepper.
Serve garnished with the shredded green spring onion and chopped/sliced red chilli.
An authentic addition is to strain beaten egg through a sieve into the soup near the end of the cooking time so that it forms strings.
"Crab and sweetcorn soup", Simon Rimmer, BBC, "Something for the Weekend", accessed 18 August 2019: https://www.bbc.co.uk/food/recipes/crabandsweetcornsoup_89965