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Author Notes: A good friend makes Lobster Chili at Christmas; I kept thinking about using crab for a hybrid of traditional seafood stew and chili. Finally did it. —Alyce Morgan
- 2 tablespoons Olive oil
- 1 pinch Crushed red pepper
- 1 Small onion, finely diced
- 2 Leeks, white/green parts only, well-washed, sliced thinly then chopped
- 2 Stalks celery with leaves, finely diced
- 1 Small fennel bulb, cored and finely diced
- 2 Cloves plump garlic, minced
- 1 tablespoon Green bell pepper, minced
- 3/4 teaspoon Kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon Fresh ground black pepper
- 2 tablespoons Chili Powder
- 1/2 teaspoon Each: ground coriander and ground cumin
- 1 Small handful fresh parsley, chopped
- 1 Bay leaf
- 2 cups Clam juice, bottled or fish stock
- 2 cups Chicken broth
- 1 cup Water
- 2 cups White beans, cooked (Northern or Cannellini)
- 1 15-ounce can chopped tomatoes, drained and rinsed
- 1 cup Cooked lump crab meat (picked over) or 2 6-ounce cans of crab, drained/rinsed
- 3 tablespoons Each: Minced green onion, green bell pepper, cilantro-for garnish (toss together)
- 2 ounces Extra sharp Cheddar cheese, grated--for garnish
- In a 6-quart heavy pot with lid, heat oil over medium heat and add the pinch of crushed red pepper, cooking for 30 seconds. Tip in fresh vegetables: onion, leeks, celery, fennel, garlic, green pepper. Season with salt and pepper, chili powder, coriander, cumin, parsley and bay leaf. Cook, stirring, 6 or 7 minutes without browning.
- Pour in liquids --clam juice, broth, water--along with the beans and drained tomatoes. Cover and bring to a boil. Taste and adjust seasonings. Cook 20 minutes partly covered or until vegetables are all quite tender.
- Stir in the crab. Heat through and simmer a few minutes. Toss together the green onion, green pepper, and cilantro for a fresh salsa garnish and set aside briefly. Taste and adjust seasonings. Serve hot garnished with the fresh green onion salsa and grated cheese.
- Whoever gets the bay leaf does the dishes. (Store leftovers tightly covered for no more than 48 hours.)