If you’re not familiar with Maryland or the Chesapeake Bay, you’ve probably never heard of a traditional tomato based spiced soup that we have around the D. C. area. Its light but full of a delicious blend of veggies and spices, and lump crab meat of course. My version takes the crab out of Maryland and leaves all those luscious flavors for a full-bodied, easy to prepare soup great for the coldest of nights this winter. The ‘must’ for this soup isn’t the bland crab meat in my mind, but the wonderful blend of spices from ‘Old Bay’ seasoning. And if you can’t get a hold of any Old Bay, then I’ve got a mighty close substitute spice blend for you to mix up. Let’s go……..
Traditionally, Maryland Crab Soup is always served with loads of these tiny Oyster Crackers. No Oyster in them, just flour, baking soda, salt and water but they make the soup. A crunchy topping as important as homemade croutons are for your salads. You gotta have Oyster Crackers to float on top. At least Saltines if you can’t find them.
Don’t mix this one up with ‘cream of crab’ soup. This one is no relation. Just sippin’ hot tomato broth with lots of veggies like carrots, corn and I add potato cubes to add texture. You can also add in some shredded Beyond Meat chicken if you have it available in your area. I’ll add more details about that in the recipe specs but it’s just fine with or without a crab substitute. The spice flavor is what makes this soup, not the meat.
If you can’t find Old Bay Seasoning, usually in the seafood area of the grocery, here’s a good spice mix substitute:
1 Tbs. Celery Salt, 1 Tbs. Ground Bay Leaves, 2 tsp Fresh Black Pepper, 1 tsp Paprika, 1/2 tsp. dry Mustard, 1/4 tsp Nutmeg, 1/4 tsp. Cinnamon, 1/4 tsp. ground Cloves, pinch of Cardamon, pinch of Cayenne Pepper
- 2 (28 oz) cans Organic Crushed Tomatoes or 6 cups of Sweet Cherry Tomatoes
- 2 cups Vegetable Broth
- 2 cups Corn
- 1 cup diced uncooked Potatoes *use frozen for a quick version
- 1 cup diced Carrots
- 1 cup Lima Beans
- 1 medium Onion diced
- 2 Tbs. Old Bay Seasoning
- 1 Tbs. Olive Oil
- Salt, Pepper and Hot Sauce to taste
- In a large stock pot, saute Onion, Carrot, Limas and Potato cubes in the oil until onion is translucent.
- Add in all remaining ingredients and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and cover. Simmer for 30 minutes or until Potatoes are fork tender.
- Serve with crackers. Season with hot sauce to taste.
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