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Healthy Shrimp Bisque

October 26, 2010
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Shrimp Bisque Here is another recipe adaptation I did for the Chatham Patch. It was at Supper restaurant and the soup was the only thing we enjoyed- well, kind of. I came home thinking about how I could replicate the shrimp bisque and make it yummier and healthier. My problem with bisques is the amount of cream and butter used to create a creamy soup. I wanted to avoid a lot of the fat but not the flavor.

So, I started with a roux- which is a mixture of flour and butter cooked with milk. I lightened the roux by using olive oil and a combination of milk and seafood broth. I made it supper flavorful with amazing ingredients like pancetta and white wine. A little bit of pancetta adds amazing flavor – the calories are worth the bang of flavor. I also added fresh thyme and of course aromatics including shallots, garlic and carrots.

All in all, it was a delicious try. I used store bought fish stock to save time but I do think the soup would be extra delicious with homemade shrimp stock. If you have the time- definitely use the homemade variety. If you don’t have the time- the store bought kind is adequate. Either way, you have a delicious, homemade, healthy soup for your family. I served it with crusty bread and some roast vegetables on the side….

  • 12 ounces jumbo shrimp, deveined and shelled
  • 1 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt

Heat a large saucepan with the olive oil. Saute the shrimp on high heat for 30 seconds on each side. Sprinkle salt and take out onto a lined platter. Cut each shrimp into three and keep aside.

  • ¼ cup pancetta, chopped
  • 2 large shallots, chopped
  • 2 large garlic cloves, chopped
  • ½ cup carrots, chopped
  • 3 sprigs fresh thyme
  • ¼ cup tomato paste
  • ¼ cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup white wine
  • 1½ cups seafood or shrimp broth
  • 1½ cups low-fat milk
  • Salt
  • ¼ cup half and half
  • Juice of half a lemon

Add the pancetta into the same saucepan and sauté over medium heat for 2 to 3 minutes. Add the shallots, garlic and carrots. Saute for another 2 minutes. Add the thyme and tomato paste and cook for 2 minutes. Add the flour and cook for another 2 to 3 minutes. Add the white wine and scrape off the brown bits from the bottom. Add the broth and milk. Whisk the liquid on high heat and bring to a boil making sure all the lumps are smoothed away. Lower the heat and cook for 10 to 15 minutes. Add the shrimp pieces and cook for 2 to 3 minutes making sure the shrimp is cooked. Add the half and half and turn the heat off. Check for seasonings and add salt if necessary. Add the lemon juice and serve hot with crusty bread.

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