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Calaloo: Crab and Coconut Spinach Stew CARLA HALL

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Carla’s Crab and Coconut Spinach Stew is a delicious twist on the classic!

3 strips of bacon
1 large green bell pepper (stemmed, seeded, and cut into 1/2-inch dice)
1 small yellow onion (peeled, finely diced)
4 scallions (green onions, trimmed and thinly sliced)
4 garlic cloves (peeled, minced)
2 sprigs fresh thyme
1 Scotch bonnet chile (slit open)
1 pound king crab legs (cut into individual legs)
3 cups chicken stock
1 cup coconut milk
1 pound baby spinach
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper (to taste)

In a large, deep skillet, cook the bacon over medium heat, turning occasionally, until the fat has rendered and the bacon is crisp, about 5 minutes. Drain on paper towels, crumble, and reserve.
To the fat in the pan, add the bell pepper, onion, scallions, garlic, and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion is just translucent, about 2 minutes. Add the thyme and chile. Cook, stirring occasionally, about 5 minutes.
Add the crab legs and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Add the chicken stock, coconut milk, and a pinch of salt. Bring to a boil over high heat. Then cover, reduce the heat to a simmer, and cook for 15 minutes.
Place the crab legs, chile, and thyme sprigs to a dish. Discard the chile and thyme.
Transfer broth to a blender and add spinach in batches. Puree until finely chopped. Season to taste with salt, keeping in mind that both the bacon and crab are naturally salty. Transfer the pureed spinach to a serving bowl, and top with the bacon and crab legs.
Tip: Store the soup in an airtight container for up to 5 days. Keep the bacon and seafood separate. The seafood will keep for no more than 2 days.

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