She Crab Soup has been a Southern signature dish for decades, bringing warm, rich flavor to kitchen tables throughout the Southeast. While local restaurants offer their own versions, this rich and filling soup traditionally consists of heavy cream, blue crab meat and crab roe (eggs) with dry sherry often added as it is plated.
Large numbers of Scottish immigrants began settling in Charleston during the 1700s. One traditional dish they brought with them was partan-bree, a crab and rice soup. The settlers began to adjust their recipe to incorporate blue crabs because of the abundance in the area. This Scottish soup served as a starting point, but She Crab Soup as we know it today was not developed until the early 1900s. As the story goes, R. Goodwyn Rhett, Mayor of Charleston, was entertaining President Taft at his home. The Rhett’s butler, William Deas, was asked to create a fancier version of their traditional crab soup. He added the orange-hued crab eggs of mature female crabs, called “she crabs” by fishermen, to give color and improve the flavor, thus inventing the Charleston delicacy known as She Crab Soup.
This delightful and smooth seafood soup is sure to impress your friends and family! Enjoy!
o 1 tablespoon butter, unsalted
o 1 quart milk
o 1/2 cup heavy cream, whipped
o 1 teaspoon lemon juice
o 1/4 teaspoon ground mace or nutmeg
o 1/4 teaspoon pepper
o 1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
o 1 teaspoon flour
o 2 cups jumbo lump crab meat
o 1/2 teaspoon salt
o 4 -6 tablespoons dry sherry
o paprika, and or fresh parsley ( to garnish)
1. Bring water in the bottom of a double boiler to a boil, reduce heat so that water barely simmers
and make sure that the amount of water does not touch the bottom of the top of the double boiler.
2. Melt butter in the top of a double boiler and blend with the flour until smooth.
3. Add the milk gradually, stirring constantly.
4. Add the crab meat and all seasonings except sherry and cook slowly, stirring frequently, for about
20 minutes on low to medium heat.
5. Finish with dry sherry and serve.