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Bowled Over

by James O. Fraioli
Bowled Over
Photo by Charity Burggraaf

Here’s a rich, smooth, and creamy bisque—just one of many memorable recipes that will be featured later this year in Spirited Cooking from the Pacific Northwest, the cookbook I assembled with Chef John Wahlke and owners Mike and Patti Sherlock of Fremont Mischief Distillery. This delicious and comforting bisque—perfect for those cold winter months—is filled with rich crab flavor and accompanied by homemade pickled peppers. Like many of the enjoyable dishes prepared at Mischief, this hearty bowl of goodness is fancy enough to serve for a special occasion but easy enough to appreciate as a weeknight dinner in your galley. Vegetables, cream, stock, and a handful of spices make up the king crab soup, which is much thinner than a chowder. If you’re not familiar, a bisque is a type of soup, but not all soups are bisques. Traditionally, a bisque uses stock or broth and has a creamier base than soup. According to Chef John, the trick with this recipe is to blend and strain, resulting in the velvety smooth texture we’re after.

King Crab Bisque with Pickled Red Peppers                    

Serves 4 to 6

2 tablespoons oil

King crab shells from 2 large legs, roughly chopped or broken

1 carrot, peeled and chopped

2 onions, peeled and chopped

4 shallots, peeled and chopped

2 stalks celery, chopped

5 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed

2 cups dry white wine

Sachet of 3 bay leaves and 4 fresh thyme sprigs

2 ½ quarts vegetable stock or water

2 tablespoons kosher salt

1 teaspoon fresh ground white pepper

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