Thursday, June 30, 2011

Spicy Coconut Shrimp Bisque – It's the Besh!

This spicy coconut shrimp bisque recipe was inspired by a similar soup I saw Chef John Besh make during a demo I attended at the Atlanta Food & Wine Festival. As I watched him make it, I couldn't wait to get back to San Francisco to give it a try.

How close is this to his version? I have no idea, as I was drunk on tequila. Besides the coconut milk, I can barely remember what he put in it. After doing a pre-show shot with his assistants, Besh jokingly instructed the floor staff to pour the audience a shot. Minutes later, much to his delight, shots of tequila were distributed throughout the room.

Just that would have made for an amusing anecdote, but it didn't stop there. By the time the demo ended 45 minutes later, we had enjoyed five rounds of drinks, with Besh and his sous chef more than keeping pace. Remarkably, when the show ended, the well-oiled chef had managed to produce a seriously delicious looking bisque with dumplings. What a show off.

Anyway, I know it's been a while since I posted a real video recipe, but I really think this one will have been worth the wait. I loved how this turned out, and I think you will as well. I hope you give it a try, and maybe tweak it with some different combinations of seafood and garnishes. Cheers! Err, I mean, enjoy!

1 pound shrimp, shells reserved
2 1/2 cups water
4 tablespoons butter, divided
1/3 cup chopped green onions
1/3 cup diced celery
1/4 cup diced jalapeno
1/4 cup flour
2 cups prepared tomato soup
1/2 cup coconut milk
1/4 teaspoon red curry paste, or to taste
salt and/or fish sauce to taste
basil chiffonade
rice crackers

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