“Soup and salad is my summertime lunch staple. After having a grocery-store prepared Lobster Bisque when I was sick earlier in the year, I wanted to make something similar. This by far exceeded my expectations. It is so addicting! I prefer to make this with heavy cream, but for a few less calories, use half and half.” – April Ferre
- 1 Pound Shrimp Shells Reserved
- 4 Cups Seafood Stock
- 3 Tablespoons Olive Oil
- 2 Cups (3 Large) Leeks Chopped
- 3 Large Stalks Celery Chopped
- 3 Medium Carrots Chopped
- 1 Tablespoon Garlic Minced
- Pinch Cayenne Pepper
- 1/4 Cup Cognac or Brandy
- 1/4 Cup Dry Sherry
- 1/4 Cup Butter
- 1/4 Cup Flour
- 2 Cups Half and Half or Heavy Cream
- 1/3 Cup Tomato Paste
- 1 Teaspoon Salt
- Pepper To Taste
- 1 Tablespoon Fresh Basil Chopped
- Place the shrimp shells and seafood stock in a saucepan and simmer for 15 minutes. Strain and reserve the stock.
- Meanwhile, heat olive oil in a large pot or Dutch oven. Add the leeks, celery and carrots and cook them for 10 minutes over medium low heat until tender. Add garlic and cook 1 more minute.
- Chop shrimp into small pieces. Add the cayenne pepper and shrimp and cook over medium heat for 3 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the Cognac and cook 1 minute, then add the sherry and cook 3 more minutes. Transfer mixture to a blender or food processor and puree.
- In the same pot, melt the butter. Add flour and cook over medium-low heat for 1 minute, stirring with a wooden spoon. Add the half and half and cook, stirring with a whisk, until thickened, about 3 minutes.
- Stir in the shrimp puree, stock, tomato paste, salt, pepper and basil. Gently heat until hot but not boiling. Season to taste and serve.