Shrimp Bisque is a lot like a creamy chowder soup, only kicked up a notch. You can add lobster or crab if it is available. However, a more economic option is to use shrimp. Even frozen shrimp is readily available and very acceptable.
dry white wine
cognac (or brandy)
large sauté pan with cover
food processor or blender
optional: immersion blender
Prepare the shrimp by cleaning and deveining it. Put the shrimp shells in a medium saucepan with the wine and water and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat and let simmer 20 minutes. Pour the liquid through a fine strainer and into a large bowl. Discard the shells. Add enough water to the broth to make about 4 cups of liquid.
Next, prepare the remaining ingredients. Heat the olive oil in a large sauté pan over medium heat. When it’s hot, add the leeks and cook, stirring occasionally, until tender but do not allow them to reach the point of becoming browned, 5 minutes. Add the garlic and stir while cooking for 1 minute.
In the same sauté pan, add the shrimp and cayenne pepper, and sauté for 3 minutes. Pour in the cognac and gently simmer for 3 minutes. Now, you can remove the shrimp and leeks with a slotted spoon and place them in a food processor. Process them to purée until smooth.
Add the tomatoes to the same sauté pan and cook until they’ve broken down into a sauce, 10 minutes. Add the butter to the sauce and stir until melted. Then whisk constantly, sprinkle the flour in and cook for 1 minute. Turn the temperature to low and pour in the light cream and cook, stirring to the bottom of the pan constantly, until the sauce thickens.
Enjoy Shrimp Bisque!
Consumption of raw or undercooked eggs, shellfish and meat may increase the risk of food borne illness.