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Eastern Shore Crab Soup

4 tablespoons butter or olive oil
1 large onion, diced
1 green bell pepper, seeded and diced
4 cups sliced okra (about 1 pound)
1 tablespoon minced garlic
2 quarts fish stock
4 large ripe tomatoes, cored, seeded, and diced, or 1 12-ounce can diced tomatoes, with juice
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon dried whole thyme
1 bay leaf
1 cup white rice
1 pound fresh or pasteurized claw or backfin crabmeat, picked over for shells

In a large pot melt the butter or heat olive oil. Add the onion and bell pepper and sauté for about 5 or 6 minutes, or until slightly softened. Add the okra and garlic and continue cooking for 5 minutes longer. Add the stock, tomatoes, Worcestershire, thyme, and bay leaf. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer for 20 to 25 minutes. Add the rice and cook for 20 minutes, or until rice is just tender. Add the crabmeat and simmer for 10 minutes more. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Source: Coastal Cooking with John Shields (Broadway, 2004)

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