Saturday, March 28, 2009

Sup Mang Cua - Crab and Asparagus Soup

You guessed it, Sup is the Vietnamese term for soup and it's usually serve as a starter. Our family usually eat sup for special occasions such as weddings, graduations, and holiday dinners. I prefer the texture of Vietnamese soup or even Chinese soup because it's thicker due to the cornstarch. My favorite is Sup Mang Cua because I love the flavor that the crab meat gives off, even though we usually use chicken broth the crab flavor always dominate. This dish can be unique to certain people depending on how they make it. My mom make fun of me at times because I put so much stuff in my sup that it doesn't seem like a sup anymore. My reasoning for it is I like to add some ingredients I persoanlly like and think will add more to the dish. I like Chinese Hot and Sour soup especially because of their bamboo shoot, so I add it to Sup Mang Cua for texture. I also love eating white fungus from Sup Nam Trang (White Fungus Soup) so in it goes.

My eggs was getting ready to expire pretty soon and I just hate wasting food no matter how little of it I have left. A friend and I got together to make dinner so sup would be nice starter. I pretty much had half the ingredients laying around already; chicken broth, eggs, and white fungus. This is my first time trying the white asparagus!

Soak white fungus in warm water until it soften.
You can use fresh crabs but I have always use canned crab from the local asian market. This time i went for the frozen crab meat and there really isn't a difference.


4 can of chicken broth
1 bunch of asparagus cut into 1 in. pieces
1 small can of bamboo shoot cut into thin strips
1 cup of crab meat
2 cup of dried white fungus
4 eggs white (you can use the whole eggs if you like)
fish sauce
cooking oil
1/2 tablespoon of mince garlic

1. Bring chicken broth to a boil and add more water into the pot, I usually add about another can 1/2 of water from the chicken broth can. Taste broth with salt, sugar, and fish sauce and let simmer for 10 minutes.

2. In a smaller pot, heat up cooking oil with the minced garlic. Stir fry the crab meat and taste it with sugar, fish sauce, and ground pepper. This should add more flavor to the crab meat.

3. Add crab meat to the chicken broth and let simmer for a 15 minutes.

4. Add bamboo shoot and asparagus and let simmer for another 15 minutes. Add white fungus.
5. In a bowl add about 1/2 cup of cold water 2 tablespoon of cornstarch. Stir until it becomes a mixture. Add the mixture into the broth and stir. The broth should become more thick.
6. Bring the pot to a boil and slowly stir in the egg whites. Turn off the stove.