|In Vietnam and in many Vietnamese restaurants,
this soup is served with the crab ground almost to a powder or even in patties, but this
inviting recipe allows you to leave it free-floating. Serves 4 as a complete meal.
8 shallots, thinly sliced
2 tablespoons peanut oil
3 cups of flaked crabmeat
6 tomatoes, chopped
2 tablespoons fish sauce
1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 pound rice vermicelli, cooked
1/2 head lettuce, finely shredded (Romaine is preferable to iceberg)
1 cup mung bean sprouts
2 limes, quartered
Heat a large heavy pan over medium-high heat. Saute the shallots in the hot oil until
soft. Add the crabmeat, tomatoes, fish sauce, sugar, and salt. Pour in 5 cups of water.
Bring to a boil, and then simmer for about 30 minutes.
To serve, divide the vermicelli among 4 large individual bowls. Ladle the soup over the
noodles, and top each serving with a handful of lettuce and bean sprouts and squeezes of