Thursday, April 24, 2014

Spicy Coconut Shrimp Soup


This soup has a bit of spice yet a good balance of Asian flavors. Adding a big squeeze of lime juice and slivers of fresh basil just before serving always brightens a dish. It’s a wonderful way to welcome spring into your kitchen.

While ginger, fish sauce and spicy red curry paste bring the flavors to this dish, the shrimp is the real star. I encourage you to seek out wild caught shrimp, even if it has been frozen, and try to avoid foreign shrimp, which to me has a strange “off” flavor and often the texture of the shrimp is soft. It’s the quality of the shrimp that counts, not the fact that it’s been frozen.

For many years we were spoiled living near the Gulf of Mexico where some of the best shrimp in the world is harvested. I can remember buying freshly caught shrimp with their heads still on packed in lots of fresh ice from big Igloo coolers in the back of pick-up trucks on the side of the road in south Louisiana. Heads on shrimp are THE very best of the best and you can’t fake freshness when you can see their heads. We’ve now discovered that the coast of the Carolinas also has wonderful fresh caught wild shrimp. I’m not saying only buy Gulf of Mexico or Carolina shrimp or never buy frozen. What I am saying is ask your fish monger where the shrimp is from or read the label so you’ll know what you are buying. Try to avoid those bags of frozen shrimp that come from who-knows-where. Good quality seafood is not cheap, so buy the best you can find. Cheap seafood is just that, cheap.


Spicy Coconut Shrimp Soup
Adapted from Cooking Light – serves 4 

3 ½ cups fat-free, low sodium chicken broth
1 cup sliced button mushrooms
¼ cup finely chopped red bell pepper
1 tablespoon light brown sugar
1 tablespoon fish sauce
½ teaspoon peeled and grated fresh ginger
¼ teaspoon red curry paste, more if you like it really spicy
1 cup light coconut milk (shake well before measuring)
1 pound large shrimp, preferably wild caught, peeled and deveined
¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro
2 tablespoons thinly sliced fresh basil
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice
Slices of lime and cilantro sprigs for garnish if desired

Combine chicken broth, mushrooms, chopped red pepper, brown sugar, fish sauce, grated ginger and curry paste in a large saucepan over medium-high heat and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer for 10 minutes. Stir in coconut milk and cook for 2 minutes until hot. Add shrimp, cook for 3 minutes or until the shrimp are done. Remove the pan from the heat, stir in the cilantro, basil and lime juice, garnish if desired, and serve right away.


This will be shared with Foodie Friday at Rattlebridge Farm, Miz Helen’s Country Kitchen Full Plate Thursday, Foodie Friday at Simple Recipes, and Comforts of Home Tasty Tuesday.   
Have a great weekend everyone.

39 comments:

  1. I know that a hint of spice and the squeeze of citrus are perfect with shrimp! I so love the flavors of this and it really would make either a great starter or a meal in itself. Beautiful, Sam!

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  2. Great flavors, lovely presenttion and mouthwatering soup!

    Cheers,

    Rosa

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  3. This sounds like a wonderful combination of flavors Sam. I agree with you on how wonderful Gulf shrimp is. Though I do like the Carolina shrimp, I really LOVE Gulf Shrimp.

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  4. Love shrimp Sam..a few nights ago we treated ourselves to a combo of lobster tails and shrimps..
    Not fresh.. flash frozen and then we cook..Hard to get fresh here..Thank you for this recipe..

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  5. Oh, my heavens, that sounds wonderful! I grew up eating Gulf shrimp and it is great!

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  6. Have I mentioned before that you have the most amazing seafood recipes, Sam? This looks so packed full with flavours and goodness! I love it!

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  7. This looks so wonderful Sam. I love all the bright fresh flavors along with the coconut milk and spices, yum! Those shrimp look just amazing.

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  8. This has all of the tropical summer flavors that I like except for a splash of Sriracha that I would add to my bowl because I just love that stuff. Great pictures too!

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  9. It looks and sounds delicious! Another great Cooking Light recipe! Have a great end of the week/end!

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  10. Sam, Laurie would love this dish! Myself...I have these weird dislikes...like bell peppers and mushrooms. It drives Laurie crazy! Whenever we eat out, she goes for the food that she doesn't get at home... Take Care, Big Daddy Dave

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  11. We have a new Asian market not far for us. I just went in to check out for any new ingredient that might catch my eye. They have shrimp with the heads on and they also have live fish that they will butcher for us. (Not sure if butcher is the proper term for fish, but you know what I mean.) This looks like a perfect recipe to try my new source.

    Madonna
    MakeMineLemon

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  12. Me encantan las sopas con gambas, y esta vuestra, con el sabor de coco y los champiñones tiene que tener un sabor muy tropical.
    BESOS QUERIDOS DESDE BARCELONA :))))

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  13. Hi Sam I agree with your purchasing practices, wild is always better and wild and fresh is best. Love this recipe, perfect combination of ingredients. If I am making seafood anymore, I look on your website first. Thanks!

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  14. Hello Sam

    I can almost taste the delicious flavours of the coconut shrimp with lime. I will bookmark this recipe

    Have a delightful weekend

    Helen xx

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  15. This really looks delicious, Sam! I happen to have some wild caught Gulf shrimp in the freezer and would love to try making this recipe. I totally agree about the shrimp, especially farm raised in other countries. It's hard to find good shrimp but I make the effort to do it. Can't wait until our Galveston supplier starts coming back to Wisconsin and selling fresh gulf shrimp out of Igloo coolers from that back of a truck :)

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  16. Very pretty Sam! I'll bet there's a ton of flavor in this dish:@)

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  17. Awesome...shrimp and coconut milk and a touch of spice...sounds perfect Sam...

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  18. Mouth watering...I love the flavors you have combined in this soup, Sam. We have a very good fish market close by and I'm going to ask them about their shrimp. Yum...yum.

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  19. this looks wonderful and so true on getting good seafood

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  20. Great advice on shrimp-buying, Sam. Your soup looks amazing, love those big sliced mushrooms too! I love coconut milk in everything.

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  21. I love Asian flavours in a soup - they make you look forward to each and every sip. This dish is fabulous and I'm a big fan of shrimp. Love the bright colours and coconut!

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  22. This looks wonderful! I am a new reader and look forward to more of your posts. What a lovely blog!! Have a FAB weekend!!

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  23. I live in the Florida panhandle and there is a great seafood store near my home. I try to buy fresh wild shrimp whenever possible. You provided good advice on purchasing shrimp.

    This is a beautiful soup.

    Velva

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  24. This looks like a burst of flavor in a bowl. Great recipe Sam.

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  25. Your soup looks wonderful Sam...everythoing I love in it and the colour just invites to that first sip! I can just imagine the taste of island and sea with that first spoonful.
    Ronelle

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  26. Shrimp and coconut? this soup has my name written all over it! You are so right about foreign shrimp. Usually from South Africa Thailand etc. They are rock shrimp. That's what you taste and I agree, the gulf or Carolina shrimp is much better. One needs to read the label!!

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  27. California fails at shrimp:(

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  28. Hi Sam,
    We are so fortunate to live close enough to the coast that we frequently get fresh Gulf Shrimp. When we drive down to the coast we always bring a chest full back with us and occasionally the fresh shrimp truck's come up here. Your Spicy Coconut Shrimp Soup will diffidently be a great recipe to try. I am exited to try this flavorful dish.

    Hope you are having a great weekend and thanks so much for sharing your awesome recipe with Full Plate Thursday.
    Come Back Soon!
    Miz Helen

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  29. All of the flavors I love. And I actually think I've made this before. It's from 2008, and everything looks so familiar. I'm glad you posted it, because I looked and it's not in my database. And pinned!

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  30. What a beautiful soup! I would gladly welcome Spring into my kitchen with such a gorgeous meal!

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  31. Sam, this soup is amazing, I can't wait to try it! I know it will be huge hit with my husband, and I just love shrimp! Thank you for another great recipe!

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  32. Pinning this to make very soon. Love the red curry paste and I've haven't tried mushrooms and shrimp together in a soup.

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  33. This looks quite good ~ I enjoy a good seafood soup that isn't too heavy. Thanks for sharing.

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  34. I just love shrimps! The soup looks so delicious. Now I'm craving for some bowl of it :)

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  35. I am seriously drooling over this one!

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  36. It won't be long before we have local Spot Prawns. The harvest season is very short but for those 6 weeks we feast like kings locally. Even living inland as I do the prawns are still wiggling as I take them home, so that is fresh. Your soup is definitely something to keep in mind Sam.

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  37. Thanks for linking this to Tasty Tuesday Sam!

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  38. This soup looks mouth-watering! I love shrimp but haven't really made too many shrimp soups at home. Looking forward to trying this recipe out, thanks for sharing! Pinned :)!

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Sam