As followers of my blog may know, I generally do not like recipes that consist of “add can A to can B.” However, some days even I do not want to start from scratch. When I can start with a good commercial soup base, I can add fresh ingredients to make a decent meal.
I was wandering around Trader Joe’s with the ever present question, “What am I going to make for dinner tonight?” The free sample of the day was their Tomato & Roasted Red Pepper Soup with a bag of frozen fried rice added to it. While I did not think much of the fried rice, the soup was tasty.
If you have a good base soup you can go in many directions. What I had on hand was an onion, half a red bell pepper and some shrimp. Voilà! A quick, delicious soup to go with a green salad and some crusty bread.
Karl’s Weekday Tomato & Red Pepper Shrimp Soup
½ lb. shrimp
1 Tbs. butter
½ yellow onion, diced
½ rep bell pepper, diced
32 oz. Tomato & Roasted Red Pepper Soup
1. Rinse, peel and de-vein the shrimp.
Tip: You may use precooked shrimp, but I prefer to start with raw shrimp.
Note: After I peel the shrimp, I put half a cup of water in a small pot and add the shrimp shells. I put a weight on the shells to hold them under the liquid and bring the pot to a boil. After cooking the shells for 4-5 minutes, I strain the broth. Just before I add the shrimp to the soup, I steam the shrimp in the broth for two minutes before adding both the shrimp and the broth to the soup. The goal here is fully cook the shrimp, and to extract all of the flavor from the shells, without thinning out the soup too much.
2. Return the liquid to the small pot and add the shrimp.
3. Bring the shrimp to a boil, cover and steam for 2-3 minutes.
4. Remove the pot from the heat and drain the liquid into a cup.
Tip: Leave the lid on the pot to keep the shrimp warm and set them aside.
5. Add the butter to a soup pot over a medium high heat and add the onions.
Note: When I am making a fresh soup I would usually add salt to the onions to speed up their browning. However, commercial soups, almost always, already have too much salt in them.
6. Sauté the onions until they are starting to brown and add the red peppers.
7. Continue sautéing for 4-5 minutes until the vegetables are soft.
8. Deglaze the pot with the shrimp liquid.
9. Add the tomato soup and bring the pot to a boil.
10. Simmer the soup for 3-4 minutes, to meld the flavors, and then add the shrimp.
11. Simmer one minute more and then serve hot.