As a native born Marylander transplanted into Virginia, southwest Virginia, the availability of good home-cooked seafood is pretty much limited to the end of my own countertop. One of the best tastes of home, especially during the cold winter months, is a hot bowl of hearty crab soup. Its easy, delicious, and brings the taste of Maryland to you wherever you call home.
Ingredients (serves 6-8)
1 cup crabmeat 1 tsp of black pepper
1 diced onion 1 tsp of salt
2 chopped celery stalks 4 Tbls of Old Bay Seasoning
3 large potatoes (cubed) 1 Tbls of parsley flakes
1 cup northern beans* 1 qrt. of diced of tomatoes
1/2 lb green beans 1/2 lb of corn
1/2 lb of sliced carrots 1/2 lb of lama beans
1/2 lb of peas 1 can of tomato soup
4 oz of sliced mushrooms
*Notes: Pasterized crab meat can be found in the seafood section of most supermarkets if fresh crab is unavailable. Dry beans are something that we always had around the house growing up. If using dry beans, soak the beans in water over night or cook separately from the soup to be added later. You can also substitute with canned beans.
Fill a large 4 qrt. pot 1/2 full with water. Dice onions, cut potatoes into 1/2″ +/- cubes, and chop celery. Add all vegetables (beans if soaked overnight), tomatoes, mushrooms, salt, pepper, parsley, tomato soup, and Old Bay seasoning to the water and bring to a boil. Then reduce heat to a low simmer and cook for 5 hours. Add crab meat and let simmer another 2 hours. Remove from heat and let stand for 20 min. before serving.
If your beans had not been soaked, its OK. Before you start your main pot, add the beans to a separate pot and fill 1/2 full with water. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a high simmer. Continue cooking at this heat for 5 hours adding water as needed to prevent cooking them dry. After 5 hours, drain the beans and add to the main pot to simmer another 2 hours.
The flavor will intensify with time so you really can’t start this soup too soon. I like to make it early in the morning. Then after the several hour cooking time, I reduce the heat to warm and leave it on the stove until dinner.
Maybe the best part is that my wife and I can enjoy the leftovers for several days.