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Life of the Party: Crab Bisque - by Elizabeth Morse
posted: Feb. 13, 2020

Life of the Party header

Crab Bisque & Cheddar Biscuits for a Casual Get-Together
I'm always looking for great soup recipes during the winter months. I was reminded of a favourite soup from years ago and have recreated it. As a teenager and young adult, I worked at Some Guys Pizza (@SomeGuysPizza) on Allisonville Road. Much of my love of cooking comes from those days. A popular lunch special was Crab Bisque made by one of the owners, Keith Carey. It was incredibly delicious and equally as popular.
I actually never made this soup during my time there. The following recipe is my version of what I remember it tasting like. So rich and hearty, with generous chunks of crab. Here, I've paired it with savoury cheddar biscuits. It's the perfect combo for a casual gathering of friends.

Crab Bisque
(Serves 4)
1 cup yellow onion, chopped
1 cup carrot, chopped
2 10ish ounce cans of good quality chicken broth
4 Tablespoons of flour
6 Tablespoons salted butter
1 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup Sherry
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
2 teaspoons of fresh lemon juice
1/2 pound lump crabmeat (or claw meat if you can find it)
Salt to taste
White pepper, to taste

Sautée onion and carrot in butter until onions are translucent. Set aside.
In a small stock pot, melt remaining butter and add flour. Whisk constantly over medium heat (you are making a "roux") for about 5 minutes being sure not to let it burn.
Slowly pour in the chicken broth, continuing to whisk. The goal is to avoid lumps.
Add the onion/carrot mixture back in and let this simmer for 20-30 minutes.
Add Worcestershire, lemon juice, Sherry and heavy cream. Simmer for 10 minutes more.
I suggest using an immersion blender for the next step, but a blender works, too. Just be sure to be careful handling hot liquid and process it in small batches if you use a standard blender. Either way, process until no chunks of carrot or onion remain.
Add crabmeat and stir gently to combine. Serve hot.
Pro Tip: Don't let this soup boil while preparing or reheating. Garnish with chopped fresh chives.

Savory Cheddar Biscuits
(Serves 7)
2 eggs
2 cups flour
1/2 cup shaken buttermilk
3 teaspoons baking powder
2 teaspoons sea salt
1 teaspoon onion powder
12 Tablespoons cold butter
1 cup sharp cheddar cheese, shredded

Preheat oven to 425 F and line a baking sheet with a silicon mat or parchment paper.
Whisk together one egg and the buttermilk and set aside.
In a large mixing bowl, combine flour, salt, onion powder and baking powder.
Using a pastry blender, cut in the butter until you have a coarse, crumbly mixture. Mix in the cheese.
Add the egg/buttermilk that you set aside and mix everything together.
Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and knead it just a few times with your hands. (You don't want the heat from your skin to warm the dough much as the little chunks of butter help the biscuits remain light.)
Roll out the dough so that its about an inch thick, or a little less. Use a 2 inch cookie cutter to make 14 biscuits. Place the biscuits a few inches apart on the prepared baking sheet.
With that last egg, beat it and use it to brush over the biscuits before baking them for 20ish minutes. The wash makes a lovely crust.
Serve warm.
Pro Tip: Biscuits can be stored in an airtight container for two days at room temp. They freeze beautifully, too!

Elizabeth Morse, owned the Corner Wine Bar in Broad Ripple for close to 20 years. She is a graduate of IU, Hoosier Chef, Food Writer, Wine Guru & Advanced Master Gardener who believes in supporting all things local. Check out her blog: Email her at
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