Asparagus and Crab Meat Soup

IngredientsAsparagus and Crab Meat Soup
4 cups chicken broth
3 tsp of nuoc mam (Vietnamese fish sauce)
1/2 tsp sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1 tbs vegetable oil
6 shallots – chopped
2 garlic cloves – chopped
8 ounces lump crab meat –
Picked over and drained
Freshly ground black pepper
2 tbs cornstarch or arrowroot – mixed with 2 tbs cold water
1 egg – lightly beaten
15 oz white asparagus spears
1 tbs shredded coriander
1 scallion – thinly sliced Cut into 1 inch sections with canning liquid reserved

Combine broth, 1 tablespoon of the fish sauce, sugar and salt in a 3-quart soup pot. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer. Heat the oil in a skillet and the shallots and garlic and stir-fry until fragrant.

Add the crabmeat, the remaining 2 teaspoons fish sauce and black pepper to taste. Stir-fry over high heat for about 1 minute then set aside Bring the soup to a boil. Add the cornstarch mixture and stir gently until the soup thickens and is clear.

While the soup is boiling, add the egg and stir gently, continue to stir for about 1 minute. Add the crabmeat mixture and asparagus with its canning liquid and cook gently until heated through. Transfer the soup to a heated tureen. Sprinkle on the coriander, scallion and freshly ground black pepper.

Makes about 4 to 6 servings.