She-Crab Soup & Crab, Corn and Country Ham Fritters

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Nothing special Tuesday night dinner unless you consider local fresh crab meat special…of course it is and I’m going to do my best to savor every slurp of the soup along with the crispy crunch of hot crab fritters.  She crab soup isn’t difficult and with the availability of crab meat in many stores, it makes for an elegant casual dinner with friends.  The crab fritters are pretty easy to pull together and of course you need a great dipping sauce or rémoulade for the fritters.  I whipped up a tangy lime “sauce” for the fritters and we began the art of overindulging in delicious crab meat.  Needless to say we didn’t eat it all and we both had a nice cup of soup for lunch…Michael brought home lump crab meat so i didn’t add into the hot soup knowing that there would be leftovers and I don’t particularly care for overcooked crab meat.

While I like The Charleston Receipts version Mr. Mike likes a thicker soup so I usually adapt any one of the many recipes that I have for a thicker style.  I have another recipe that makes gallons and calls for 5 pounds of crab meat ($$$$$’s)…pretty much the same as all the others that I have come across though.

The following recipe is from 82 Queen Street and one that I use/adapt many times and I made 1/2 the recipe saving the rest of the crab for fritters.

82 Queen Award-Winning She Crab Soup
MAKES 12 SERVINGS

ROUX:
1/4 lb. butter
1/4 lb. flour

PREPARATION:
Melt the butter and stir in flour to make roux. Add milk and cream. Bring to boil. Add remaining ingredients, simmer for 20 minutes. Garnish with sherried, whipped cream.

INGREDIENTS:
1 cup heavy cream
3 cups of milk
2 cups of crab, shrimp or mild seafood stock
1/4 lb. crab roe
1 lb. crab white meat (special), I only add crab meat to each serving rather than toss it all into the pot…there is always a little crab liquid, so strain it into the soup.  If you can get special and jumbo crab meat add the special to the soup and finish with the lump crab meat
sauté 1 cup chopped celery, 1/4 cup finely diced carrots and 1/4 cup chopped onion

1/4 cup Sherry wine
1 tbsp. Tabasco sauce
1 tbsp. Worcestershire sauce

*optional,  a few grates of lemon zest and a squeeze of lemon juice, pinches of white pepper and a pinch or two of seafood seasoning.  Chopped scallions, fresh parsley and I love a little Tajin seasoning before serving, just a touch.

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Corn and Crab Fritters
 
Servings: Makes about 46 – I made half the recipe
Ingredients

Corn and Crab Fritters with Country Ham – adapted from I don’t remember…

  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 2 ears sweet corn, shucked and kernels removed or 1 1/2 cups frozen corn , thawed
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon seafood seasoning
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper
  • 2/3 cup milk
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 pound fresh lump crabmeat , picked over
  • 1/2 cup finely diced or shredded country ham
  • Vegetable oil for pan-frying
Directions

Preheat oven to 250°. Line 2 baking sheets with a double layer of paper towels.

In a medium skillet over medium heat, melt butter. Add corn and onion; cook, stirring occasionally, until onion softens, 8 to 10 minutes. Remove from heat; cool.

Combine flour, baking powder, salt, pepper, and red pepper and other seasonings.   Add in the country ham and mix thoroughly. In another medium bowl, whisk together milk and eggs. Only when the sautéed vegetables are cool enough add to the egg and milk.  Gradually whisk milk mixture into flour mixture just until smooth. Stir in corn mixture and crabmeat. Cover and refrigerate for at least 15 minutes.

Meanwhile, add enough oil to a large, heavy skillet so it reaches 1/4 inch deep; heat over medium-high heat. Carefully drop 6 to 8 mounds of batter by level tablespoon into hot oil. Cook until golden brown, about 1 minute per side. Transfer fritters to paper towels; keep warm in oven. Repeat with remaining batter.  Rémoulade or other sauce of choice.

Lime Mayo – thoroughly blend

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3/4 cup mayonnaise
3-4 tablespoons of lime marmalade
2 teaspoons creole or Dijon grainy mustard
grated lime and lemon zest
pinches of seafood seasoning, white pepper, and salt if needed