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  Asparagus and Crab Soup

8 cups chicken stock
1 lb fresh asparagus, diced
1 Tbs fish sauce
1 Tbs olive oil
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
2 green onions, finely chopped
1/2 lb crab meat
1/2 tsp white pepper
2 tsps cornstarch
2 tsps water
1 egg
1/4 cup cilantro, finely chopped
slivered green onions for garnish

In a large heavy saucepan bring stock to a boil and add asparagus. Cook until fork tender about 3-4 minutes. Remove asparagus and set aside. Add fish sauce to stock, cover pot and reduce heat to a simmer. Prepare cornstarch by whisking together with the water to make a smooth mixture; set aside

Heat olive oil in a heavy pan to medium-high; saute garlic and green onions for a minute. Add crabmeat and pepper; continue cooking while stirring and tossing. Bring the stock to a boil again.

Stir the crabmeat mixture into the stock. Slowly whisk in the cornstarch and water mixture. Break the egg into the soup and whisk vigorously. Cook approximately 2 minutes; test for taste and add salt if needed. Finally, add asparagus and cilantro.

Serve in bowls topped with slivers of green onions.

Yield: 6 servings