Shrimp and Crab Bisque
If you can get fresh or frozen crab do so. Don't use imitation crab. You could also substitute the containers of frozen lobster. Substitute ½ - 1 cup of Chardonnay for the stock. Make fish stock if you want from fish bones, heads, skins. Don't chop raw vegetables in food processor as they will be chopped too small for the immersion blender to puree them.
Ingredients - makes about 6 Dinner Party portions
Method1. Melt butter in a 3 quart non stick pan. Add onions, garlic, carrot and celery and cook, covered over a low heat, for about 10 minutes until softening. This is known as sweating the vegetables and allows more flavor to develop rather than just cooking them immediately in stock.
2. Add the water, tomato sauce, stock concentrate, tomato ketchup, Worcestershire sauce, coffee filter of herbs and freshly ground pepper. Bring to a boil, turn down to a simmer, and cook covered for about 20 minutes until vegetables are tender.
3. Remove herb packet and then use an immersion blender and puree the vegetable and stock mix directly in the pan.
4. Add the lemon rind, thawed shrimp, drained crab, nutmeg, cayenne if desired, and light cream.
5. Add sherry and bring back to just under a boil. Taste and adjust seasoning.
6. Turn off heat, add parsley and let sit for a few minutes. You don't want to boil any soup with a milk mix added as it can break up. Too much heat will also toughen the shrimp and also will prevent you appreciating the flavor of the soup.
NotesThis soup can be made the day before,refrigerated and reheated gently. For my taste, no additional salt is required.
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Oonagh Williams, proprietor of Royal Temptations, has a Culinary Arts degree, offers a Personal Chef service, teaches a variety of classes in International Cooking, and makes regular appearances on WMUR ABC Channel 9's Cooks' Corner. You can contact Oonagh at 603-424-6412.