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Shrimp Bisque, Reduced-Fat Shrimp Bisque, Reduced-Fat

Thickened with rice and a little light cream added for richness. This is a variation from a Spanish recipe incorporating Pernod liquer, but I choose to add a similar taste of anise using fennel bulb in the stock.

1 pound medium-sized shrimp
8 cups water
3 carrots, chopped
2 ribs of celery, chopped
1 onion, chopped
1/2 fennel bulb, chopped (optional)
1 bay leaf

3 tablespoons uncooked rice
2 tablespoons tomato paste
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons flour
Black pepper, white pepper & cayenne pepper
1/4 cup light cream, like half & half
2 tablespoons chopped parsley

Peel and devein shrimp, reserving shells. Bring water to boil in large, soup pot. Add shells, vegetables and bay leaf. Bring to boil and then simmer for 30 minutes. Strain over bowl, reserving clear shrimp stock.

Clean stockpot and add shrimp stock. Stir in rice, butter and tomato paste. Bring to boil and simmer, covered, for 20 minutes.

Reserve six shrimp for garnish and add the remaining to a blender. Add half of the hot stock. Blend, with caution and transfer to a bowl. Add remaining stock (and any rice) to blender and puree. With motor running add flour, light cream and seasonings.

Transfer all pureed soup to clean stockpot and heat throughly. Meanwhile dice remaining shrimp for garnish. Toss with salt and pepper and parsley.

Serve in bowls with a tablespoon of chopped shrimp/parsley as a garnish.

Serves 4.

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