Spider crab bisque
On my menu in Paris you will not find tomatoes during the winter or fresh scallops during the summer because it's not the season. I want to show that to people.
Photo: images from Stephane Reynaud's 365 Good Reasons to Sit Down to Eat
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- 6 fresh spider or blue swimmer crabs
- 2 potatoes
- 2 carrots
- 2 french shallots (eschalots)
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 250ml (1 cup) white wine
- 2 very ripe tomatoes, diced
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste (concentrated puree)
- 200ml pouring (whipping) cream
- Salt and pepper
Poach the spider crabs in a large volume of water for 15 minutes. Remove the meat from the shells* (this will take a little time).
Clean out the body shells** — they will be used, to our great delight, as tureens for the bisque. Ah, Brittany, the joys you bestow upon us.
Peel the potatoes and carrots, cut them into cubes. Peel and slice the shallots. Saute three-quarters of the shallots with the carrots and potatoes in the olive oil, moisten with the white wine.
Add three-quarters of the crabmeat, the tomato and tomato paste, cook for 20 minutes.
Add the cream, then puree and season. Serve the bisque in the crab shells, (oh, it's so beautiful).
Add the rest of the crabmeat and a few shallot rings.
* Using a lobster pick, you're going to empty out each of the spider crab claws and get the roe found in the body cavity.
** Simply rinse the shells of the crabs in water.
From 365 Good Reasons to Sit Down to Eat by Stephane Reynaud, Murdoch Books, $79.95.