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Shrimp Bisque

1- 2 pounds large shrimp, peeled & deveined, shells reserved
4 c. seafood or chicken stock
3 T. olive oil
2 c. chopped leeks, white & light green parts (about 3)
1.5 T. chopped garlic
Pinch cayenne pepper (don’t use more than this!)
1⁄4 c. brandy
1⁄4 c. dry sherry
4 T. butter
1⁄4 c. flour
2 c. heavy cream
1/3 c. tomato paste
2 t. kosher salt
1 t. freshly ground black pepper

Simmer shrimp shells & stock in a large pot for 15 minutes. Strain & reserve the stock. Add enough water to make 3 3⁄4 cups.

In the same pot, heat olive oil. Add leeks & cook over medium-low heat until tender, but not brown, about 10 minutes. Add garlic & cook 1 minute. Add cayenne pepper & shrimp; cook 3 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add brandy & cook for 1 minute. Add sherry & cook 3 minutes longer. Transfer mixture to food processor fitted with steel blade & process until coarsely pureed OR use an immersion blender.

In the same pot, melt butter. Add flour & cook over medium-low heat for 1 minute, stirring constantly. Add cream and stir with a whisk until thickened, about 3 minutes. Stir in the pureed shrimp mixture, tomato paste, salt & pepper. Heat gently until hot. Season to taste.

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