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Meg’s 3 Week Cooking Challenge: Light Crab Bisque

A confession is in order.  I skipped a week of my own three week challenge!  Things just got a bit crazy around the house and week 2 is happening one week late.  Never fear though, I’m still planning on tackling those unused kitchen gadgets.  It’s just a little more spaced out than I hoped for.  After tackling the panini maker, next up was the hand immersion blender.

I was a little worried I wouldn’t find any recipes that I wanted to make, after all we are still a few months away from gazpacho.  That’s when my friend Kate sent me a recipe for a light version of crab soup.  I adore cream of crab bisque, but it’s a treat.  After all, that heavy cream can be pretty rich.  I loved the idea of tackling a lighter version, so off I went.  The result was a great soup full of healthy veggies.  It might not be as delicious as that bisque, but my thighs can rest easy as I slurp it down! It was a little expensive to make since crab is a pricey item, but it lasted us several meals so in my book it evened out and reduced the number of take out nights we had this week. Working AND cooking is so hard! Having something on hand is so helpful throughout the week nights.

To start you make a relish of avocado, tomato, corn and lime juice and let it rest while you make the soup.  I could eat just that relish!

A base of yellow pepper, corn, and onion kick start this healthy soup.

Getting ready to use the blender….

Holy batman, the blender had it pureed in about 10 seconds flat!  How have I lived without it all this time?!

The good stuff!

And dinner is served!  I also had a loaf of french bread and salad to round out the meal.

And it’s official.  I’m obsessed with my hand blender.  I can’t wait to use it again and I can’t believe how much time and effort it saved in the pureeing process.  Never again will I have to transfer hot soup in batches into a blender.  Woot woot!  See the recipe below from Eating Well, and get ready for week 3, fondue!

Ingredients

RELISH
1 small avocado, finely diced
1 cup fresh corn kernels or frozen, thawed
1 medium tomato, seeded and finely diced
1 tablespoon lime juice
1/4 teaspoon salt
Freshly ground pepper to taste

BISQUE
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 cup fresh corn kernels or frozen, thawed
1 cup chopped onion
1 cup diced yellow bell pepper
1 1/2 cups diced peeled russet potato
3/4 teaspoon sweet or hot smoked paprika, plus more for garnish
1 cup dry sherry (I used cooking sherry and it was fine)
2 cups seafood stock or broth or reduced-sodium chicken broth
2 cups low-fat milk
12 ounces crabmeat, drained if necessary
1/2 teaspoon salt

Directions

To prepare relish: Combine avocado, corn, tomato, lime juice, salt and pepper in a small bowl; toss to coat. Let stand at room temperature while you prepare the bisque.

To prepare bisque: Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add corn, onion and bell pepper and cook, stirring often, until the onion and pepper have softened, about 5 minutes. Add potato and paprika and cook, stirring often, for 2 minutes. Add sherry and cook, scraping up any browned bits, until the liquid has reduced slightly, about 5 minutes. Add stock (or broth) and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the potatoes are very tender, about 15 minutes.

Working in two batches, puree the vegetable mixture in a blender. Return the puree to the saucepan; stir in milk, crab and salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, until heated through, 3 to 5 minutes. Serve each portion of bisque with about 1/4 cup relish; sprinkle with additional paprika, if desired.

Megan

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