Silky Fennel Soup with Crabmeat
- SERVINGS: 4
Adding sweet crabmeat to this soup makes for a sophisticated first course, but it is just as lovely served on its own.
- 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 fennel bulbs (2 pounds)—halved lengthwise, cored and cut into 1/2-inch pieces, fronds reserved
- 1 medium onion, coarsely chopped
- 4 cups chicken stock or canned low-sodium broth
- 1 medium Yukon Gold potato, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
- Salt and freshly ground pepper
- 1/2 pound fresh crabmeat, picked over
- Heat the oil in a large saucepan until shimmering. Add the fennel pieces and onion, cover and cook over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until crisp-tender, about 7 minutes. Add the chicken stock and potato, cover and bring to a boil. Simmer over moderately low heat until the vegetables are tender, about 10 minutes.
- Working in batches, puree the soup in a blender or food processor until smooth. (Alternatively, use an immersion blender to puree the soup.) Return the soup to the saucepan and reheat gently. Season with salt and pepper. Ladle the soup into shallow bowls and mound the crab on top. Garnish with fennel fronds and serve.
The silky texture and anise flavors of this soup go best with a dry and delicate white, such as an Italian Gavi.