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She Crab Soup

Can someone educate me on what exactly a She Crab Soup is supposed to be like?

Is it more like a lobster bisque? Or more chowder like?

And is crab roe a requisite ingredient?

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  1. I'd never heard of it until I moved to the south. I've had several varieties but most are closest to chowders. Most recipes call for roe but a restaurant in my city that's well-known for she crab soup doesn't use roe. One of the key ingredients is a drizzle of sherry on top. Also, chopped eggs. It's delicious.

    1. The she crab soup I've had in restaurants in the Outer Banks of North Carolina are more like a thick bisque - I would not say chowder as when I think of chowder I think of a soup which has potatoes in it. I don't believe they contain the roe. Many old timer local recipes which I've seen do, however.

      1. The versions I have had resembled a bisque instead of a chowder. It has a pink color that comes from the crab roe. Although I am under the impression, and I could be wrong, it is illegal to catch and not release female crabs w/roe. Sherry is typically served on the side to be poured on top.

          1. The she-crab soup I have had was more like a bisque. I am going down to Hilton Head, and Savannah for a week, and plan on eating a cup or two of she-crab soup every day I am down there, so I will report back on what I encounter.

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            1. re: swsidejim

              I had about 8 different bowls of she crab soup when I was in Hilton Head, SC.. All but the 2 bowls I had at Charleys Crab were chowder like consistancy, and just average.

              The one @ Charleys Crab was spectacular, requiring me to make 2 visits on back to back days. A bowl was brought out with the ample crab plus julienne carrots, and zuchini. In a seperate pitcher was the rich broth that was then poured over the ingredients in the bowl. The broth a bisque type broth with the hint of sherry was very good, and the 2nd best soup I have ever had(the best being the stone crab bisque @ Joes Seafood, Prime Steaks, and Stone Crab in Chicago).