HomeFishJ.Sheekey’s Crab Bisque Smooth and creamy – this crab bisque makes an excellent winter lunch. The name bisque is thought to have come from the Biscay region. If you can’t find whole crabs use raw prawns with the shell and head on and follow the recipe in the same way. Serves 4-6 Ingredients • 1kg live crab • 2 tbsp sunflower oil • 1 small onion, peeled and roughly chopped • 1 small leek, trimmed and roughly chopped • 1 small carrot, peeled and roughly chopped • 3 garlic cloves, peeled and roughly chopped • ½ tsp fennel seeds • A few sprigs each of thyme, tarragon & dill • 1 bay leaf • 40g butter • 2 tbsp tomato purée • 3 tbsp plain flour • 125ml white wine • 1.5 litre fish stock • 100ml double cream • Splash of Cognac • Salt and freshly ground white pepper Method 1 Plunge the crab into boiling water for 2 minutes. Remove from the pan. Cool and place in a heavy-duty plastic bag. 2 Use a rolling pin to bash the body and legs into small pieces. Doing this in a plastic bag stops shell flying everywhere. 3 Heat the oil in a large heavy-based saucepan, add the crab and roast over a high heat for about 5 minutes, stirring every so often until it begins to colour. 4 Add the onion, leek, carrot, garlic, fennel seeds and herbs, and continue cooking for another 5 minutes or so, until the vegetables begin to colour. 5 Add butter and stir well. Add tomato purée, stir well and cook for a minute or so over a low heat. Add white wine and reduce by half. Add flour, stirring well. 6 Slowly add fish stock (a good quality cube is fine), stirring continuously to avoid lumps. Bring to the boil and season. Simmer gently for 45 minutes. 7 Drain the soup in a colander over a bowl, stirring the shells so the meat goes into the liquid. Remove about one-third of the softer white body shells (not the very hard claw and main shell) and place in with the soup. 8 Check for any remaining meat, and keep to one side before discarding the rest. Blend shells and liquid in a liquidiser or strong food processor until smooth, then strain through a fine-meshed sieve. 9 Return the soup to a clean pan, bring back to the boil. Add cream, crab meat and Cognac. 10 Adjust the seasoning again and stir well. Serve in warm bowls with warm crusty bread and butter. Recipe courtesy of J.Sheekey. Find similar recipes inside the restaurant’s new charity calendar, which features photographs of fishermen around the UK to celebrate the restaurant’s suppliers.