The first mention of seafood bisque can be traced to 17th century. In those days, bisque was not a considered a fancy soup like it is now, but more a fisherman’s dish, made with whatever ingredients were on hand.
While some believe the word “bisque” comes from the seafood rich Bay of Biscay, others say it is a combination of bis, meaning “twice” and cuites, meaning “cooked.” Since a common way to make bisque is to roast the shells first, then simmer them in the broth, there may be something to second theory.
Here in Louisiana, we love our crawfish, crab, oyster and shrimp bisque. This recipe is delightful and made a whole lot easier because we start with Blue Runner Creole Bisque Base. We like to serve ours with a warm, buttery baguette. It serves 6 to 8 people, and it takes less than half an hour to make!
Add a tablespoon of olive oil to Sauté shrimp tails over medium-high until pink, about two minutes per side. Set aside for garnishing.
Take the shells from 2 pounds of fresh shrimp and several sprigs of fresh thyme and add to 2 cans of Blue Runner Creole Bisque Base. Let steep at a low simmer for 15-20 minutes (you could go as long as 45 minutes, but just be careful not to boil them above a light simmer).
Remove the shells and thyme and stir in 1 cup of heavy cream and blend to create a smooth, creamy texture.
Pour bisque into bowls. For the garnish, add sautéed shrimp, then mix 2 ounces of crème fraîche with 2 tablespoons of lemon juice to create a drizzle. Then finished with chives and a few drops of Crystal Hot Sauce.
Tip: Soup can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator up to 2 days.
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