Combine the flour and oil in a large nonstick saucepan and whisk until smooth. Over medium heat, stir constantly until the mixture is the color of peanut butter, about 10 minutes. Add the onions, bell peppers, celery, carrots, bay leaves, salt, and cayenne. Cook, stirring often, until the vegetables are soft, about 10 minutes.
Add the crabs and tomatoes and stir to mix. Cook for 10 minutes. Add the brandy, water, and crab boil. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer, uncovered, for 1 hour and 45 minutes.
Add the green onions and parsley. Remove the bay leaves. Remove from the heat and add the cream. Mix to blend. Ladle into individual serving bowls and sprinkle each with 1/4 cup crabmeat. Top each with a half crab and a crab toast.
1/2 pound lump crabmeat, picked over for shells and cartilage
1 large egg
1 large egg white
2 tablespoons minced green onions
1 tablespoon minced fresh parsley leaves
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground white pepper
3 ounces cream cheese, cut into pieces
2 tablespoons heavy cream
8 slices brioche, or home-style white bread
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
Combine the crabmeat, egg, egg white, green onions, parsley, garlic, salt and white pepper in a food processor and pulse until blended but still chunky. Add the cream cheese and pulse until smooth and thick. Add the cream and pulse until just blended, being careful not to over process.
Spread 1/4 of the crabmeat mixture on each of 4 slices of bread, spreading it to the edges and smoothing the top. Place another slice of brioche on top and press down to make a sandwich.
Heat the vegetable oil over medium-high heat in a large skillet.
Add the crab toasts to the hot oil, in batches if needed, and cook until golden on the first side, about 3 minutes. Turn and cook until golden on the second side, about 2 minutes. Drain on paper towels if needed.
To serve, cut each toast diagonally into halves or quarters. Serve alongside the Crab Bisque.
Yield: 8 servings