Seafood Bisque – Recipe

  • Author:
  • Category: Main Dish



  • For the Seafood Stock
  • shells from shrimp and crab
  • water to cover
  • 1/2 onion
  • 1 shallot
  • 1 carrot
  • 1 turnip
  • carrot greens
  • parsley
  • 3 bay leaves
  • salt
  • For the Bisque
  • 3 quarts seafood stock (or however much you have made and adjust accordingly)
  • 4 cups assorted seafood – I used Alaskan King Crab, shrimp and scallops
  • 1 1/2 cups heavy cream
  • 4 TBS unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/4 cup all purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup sherry (optional but it does add a lovely flavor)
  • salt and pepper
  • paprika
  • additional flour mixed with water if necessary to further thicken


  1. It is not complicated to make a good bisque, just time consuming as you need to make the stock first. If you have a high quality seafood stock in a box or can by all means use it and just skip this part.
  2. Take all of the shells you have amassed and put them in a large soup pot. Cover them with water and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and let them simmer for several hours (I let mine go for two.) Add in the onion, shallot, turnip, carrot, carrot greens, parsley and bay leaves. Let cook for another couple of hours. Taste and add salt and pepper.
  3. Strain the solids out of the stock and clean the pot. Pour the liquid through cheesecloth or a very fine sieve back into the pot. Take the softened butter and the flour and mix it together until you have a very thick paste.
  4. Bring the stock to boil. Reduce to a simmer. Dip a whisk into the mixture and little by little add it into the stock making sure to whisk, whisk, whisk with each addition so that it blends in well. You do not want to make little dumplings. The soup will slowly thicken. If you are going to include the sherry add it at this point. Bring the soup to a boil. Lower the heat and add the heavy cream and let heat through. Do not bring it back to a boil. If the bisque is not as thick as you would like then mix about 1/4 cup of flour with water to make a slurry and add it to the soup in a stream whisking all the time so as to not make lumps. About 10 minutes before you are ready to eat add in the seafood – you don’t want to overcook it and have it get tough.
  5. To serve – add the soup to a bowl piling the seafood in the center. Sprinkle the paprika over top

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