Thursday, January 27, 2011

Hot and Sour Crab Soup With Mushrooms

Another day and another chance for a group of friends to gather before being thrown into a bubbling cauldron. These are more or less the ingredients of today's soup, save for the pinch of palm sugar, salt, and six cups of stock.
My soup was largely based upon the kindness of my housemate who brought home a coolerful of Dungeness crabs last week. He went out on an inflatable raft at a nearby beach and In his words, it felt a little unfair it was so easy. Today I threw a crab and a half into my soup. As it simmered away I realized that maybe I went a little overboard.
I suppose this little story illustrates a point I try and make from time to time: make what you've got when you've got it to make what you can. Sure, my kitchen has been filled with imported ingredients from far flung regions to make some of these recent dishes, but they are executed with regional ingredients as well as the imported ones. My recipe called for "crab" and dungeness was what I had. A freezer full of dungeness crab is really something to get excited about.
Serving up a bowl meant it was time to take a picture. I occasionally linger a little too long over a bowl of noodles or a plate of stir fry. but let me assure you I do little "food styling." I'm blessed with a kitchen with lots of natural light, and most of the time, what you see is what I eat even if I sometimes take pictures from every possible angle. I was talking to a woman the other week who told me all about her food styling and effort involved in getting a good photo. She told me all about the laborious process involved in getting her poor humiliated food to look good. She didn't bother asking me anything about my methods, but much like her poor degraded food she was obviously dead on the inside. Poor thing.
I made this soup in part because I had a sick housemate who looked like he needed soup. He was grateful but didn't feel like eating the crab so I ate an entire crab at lunch time. I made an absolute mess of myself and hours later still smell like the sea.

1 comment:

Hanie said...

to enjoy a good crab is to make an absolute mess of it while doing so :) You did good!