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Sea Captain’s House

A historical favorite of the Myrtle Beach area, the Sea Captain’s House is renowned for its one of a kind She Crab Soup. Watch Executive Chef Phillip Ratliff show us the secrets behind the distinctive flavors.

Click to view a transcript of the video.

"Hi I am Phillip Ratliff, Executive Chef here at Sea Captain's House Restaurant here in Myrtle Beach.  Today we are going to be doing our recipe for our famous She Crab Soup.  It has been on the menu since its inception in 1962 and has won many awards.  So, let's go back to the kitchen and I will show you how you make this soup.

First we are going to begin with unsalted butter, 1/4 pound.  This is a much smaller recipe then we would usually make for the restaurant.  This is one that I fashioned for you to easily make at home.  Let the butter melt down to low-medium heat.  We do not want to brown the butter at all. 

We want to add 1/2 of a medium fine diced onion.  We are going to cook this onion in the butter until it is pulverized.  Do not brown the onion just sweat it.  Slowly take your time with it until the onion is very soft.  By the time you are done with it the onion will almost disappear into a puree.

Next we are going to make a rue in the pot adding 3/4 cup of all purpose flour.  Take your time with this and let the raw flavor cook out of the flour. As it cooks in with the onion it will develop a little bit of a nutty flavor.

Next we are going to add two cups of heavy cream and 1 quart of half and half.  When this comes to the proper temperature, your rue that is made with the flour and the butter will thicken with the cream and half and half and give you that nice creamy consistency that you are looking for.  This is a patient process. 

While this is going on we are going to add a pinch of white pepper.  Slightly larger pinch of brown nutmeg and save our salt for last.  As you can see your rue has reacted with your cream and half and half giving it the nice consistency.  Next you are going to add 1/2 cup of good quality sherry.  At this time, just a pinch of salt.

We will finish the soup later while adjusting the salt when we add our crab meat.  Alright now it is just timing, you let this simmer on low, stirring regularly for about an hour.

Now that our soup has simmered for about an hour, we are going to complete it by adding crab meat to it.  I have here a pound of domestic blue crab meat that I picked completely off shell.  Only the domestic product will do, you don't want any of that imported stuff for good She Crab Soup.

Alright, there you have it.  Thank you for joining us today on Chef's Secrets Revealed, I am Phillip Ratliff and I hope you enjoy the She Crab Soup. If you'd like we'd be glad to make it for you at the Sea Captain's House!


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