ISO your best SHRIMP BISQUE recipe
Here's one I enjoyed:
The French Horn (Eugene, OR)
BUTTER, 6 T, divided
ONION (YELLOW), 2, finely minced
WILD MUSHROOMS, 4 C, quartered or chopped into large chunks (OR WHITE MUSHROOMS)
MUSHROOM (WHITE BUTTON/CREMINI), 4 C, quartered or chopped into large chunks (OR WILD MUSHROOMS)
THYME, several sprigs fresh, chopped
SHERRY, 1 C (OR MADEIRA)
MADEIRA WINE, 1 C (OR SHERRY)
TOMATOES, CANNED, 2 C cut-up, puréed (OR FRESH TOMATOES)
FRESH TOMATO, 2 C cut-up, puréed (OR CANNED TOMATOES)
FISH STOCK, 2 C, plus additional if necessary (could certainly use shrimp stock instead)
GARLIC, 1 clove, minced
SALT AND FRESHLY GROUND BLACK PEPPER TO TASTE
ALL-PURPOSE FLOUR, 0.25 C
MILK, 1 C
CREAM, 1 C
SHRIMP, 1.5, lbs cooked
Melt 4 T butter in a large, heavy-bottomed pot. Add the onions and sauté over low heat until the onions are very tender but not browned, about 15 minutes. Turn heat up and add the mushrooms, thyme and sherry, and sauté until the mushrooms are soft and have started to release their juices. Add the tomatoes, broth, garlic and salt and pepper. Bring to a simmer, reduce heat and gently simmer for a few minutes. Meanwhile, make a cream sauce. Melt the remaining 2 T butter in a medium saucepan. Stir in the flour and cook over low heat, stirring constantly, for 2-3 minutes. Whisk in the milk and cream. Cook over medium heat, whisking constantly, until the sauce just comes to a boil. Add to the tomato mixture and stir well. Add the shrimp, taste and adjust seasoning with salt, pepper, thyme and more fish broth if necessary.
This will make you about 10 Cups of bisque. I use a pound of shrimp. Once I devein and shell the shrimp I saute the shells in butter on medium high heat for about 3-5 minutes - keep stirring. I add about 2 cans of chicken broth (clam juice works too) and let it simmer for 1/2 an hour of so. Then I strain the shells and discard them. I use the same pot to cook the shrimp in butter very quickly 2-3 minutes at the most. I transfer the shrimp to a plate or a bowl and add some finely chopped carrots, and onion (one of each) and saute them until tender and very lightly brown, around 10 minutes I guess. (Sorry, working off the top of my head here, I've never written the recipe down). I pour the liquid back in and add 2 T. regular white rice. Add some salt and white pepper to the pan and boil, turn down heat and cook until the rice is finished, 25-30 minutes. I add a can of tomatoes, which I squish w/ my hands first (14 oz.?) I think that's it. I cook another 20 or so minutes then add the shrimp. Take it off the heat and blend well, in batches, of course. Or you can use a mixing stick, if you prefer. Then use a full cup of heavy cream and a T or so of brandy. Reheat it but do not boil or it might curdle. That's it. Easier than I make it sound.
What a lovely recipe! Your version is what I'm going to adopt from now on. But how about if you want a smooth bisque omitting the rice and straining out the solids before adding the cream and vermouth? I think maybe the word bisque implies something of the consistency of smooth white liquid pottery slurry.
re: niki rothman
Thanks niki. I do blend it in batches in the blender and it comes out nice and even. I use the rice to thicken the bisque and have never found it lumpy or chunky but it does take a good 5 minutes of so per batch to blend it to the consistency you want. BTW, the vermouth is first and the cream and brandy come last.
The bestest, sweetest, freshest shrimp you can find - clean, and chop roughly, and submerge in barely simmering heavy cream for about 2 minutes - only until they change color. Add a pat of plugra, or other Euro. style unsalted butter, fresh ground white pepper, and sea salt. Float one huge, lightly cooked shrimp on top. Tiny squeeze of lemon juice.
Wow! That should be heavenly.