Thursday, 20 September 2012

Mary Berry's Crab and Sweetcorn Soup

Next on the list of things-I-have-to-use-up-before-next-Tuesday-because-I'll-never cook-with-it-again was a tin of crab meat.  I bought it months ago with the intention of making Leith's Chilli Crab Noodles one night when I needed a store cupboard meal.  That was about eight months ago.  Obviously being tinned, it wasn't too much of a trauma and it didn't take up much space.  But it was sitting there looking too much like a spare can of tuna and it had to go before I decided I wanted a tuna jacket, only to find that all I had was crab meat.

I'd eaten crab a sum total of once before in my life.  That was 25 years ago and then it was only the tiniest morsel as I found it too 'sweet'.  We were on a family trip to Cancale in France - it's a haven of seafood that I'd love to visit now I'm older and would appreciate a plate of fresh-off-the-boat Fruits de Mer but back then all I wanted to do was crack open everyone's langoustines and was then resolutely horrified at the French lady who sat on the side of an oyster bed, picking them out, shucking them and knocking them back like she was doing tequila shots.  It seemed both gross (I was 10) and barbaric at the same time.

The crab dish wasn't at all planned for today.  I had every intention of making Cathryn's savoury strudel from this week's bake off but stuff happened at work and I ended up being dragged along to a free lunchtime Mexican fiesta.  They say there's no such thing as a free lunch.  When you have to walk a mile down hill and then back up it in four inch heels, you certainly pay the price.  But it was worth it to spend time out in the fresh air and laugh at the management team who - replete with fake 'taches - looked like the band from the Doritos ad.

So the soup was the antithesis to the excess of mass cooked, watery fajitas and slightly chewy mystery meat tacos from lunch time.  Storecupboard fodder and simple enough to make when you're also juggling cooking a steak and mushroom ciabatta and fish fingers with Peppa Pig spaghetti.  As I was making it for one I used a whole tin of crab meat so it was much thicker and bulkier than it would have been for two.  The flavours were good although I added some chilli to give it a little heat and that worked really well.

The recipe I used came from my trusty Mary Berry's Complete Cook Book (the original version) but you can find it through this Google Books link.

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