This rich and creamy lobster bisque is made with flavorful homemade lobster stock and spiced with harissa chili paste! Our spicy take on this classic soup is smooth, invigorating and bursting with seafood flavor!
I’ve been dreaming about this recipe for awhile now. I absolutely love lobster and spicy stews are my ideal comfort food. So when I had the idea to create a harissa spiced lobster bisque my expectations were exceedingly high. Luckily, the flavors came together just as I had imagined and this spicy seafood soup is now the only way I want to enjoy lobster bisque!
preparing the lobster stock and lobster meat
Good lobster bisque is all about the homemade lobster stock, which actually takes minimal effort to prepare. For simplicity, we use just lobster tails in this recipe; they’re much easier to work with (and less messy) than whole lobsters.
To make the stock, you’ll start by parboiling the tails in salted boiling water for 2-3 minutes. This cooks the lobster just enough to easily remove the meat from the shell. It also ensures that we don’t overcook the lobster, which can result in an unappetizing rubbery or tough texture. We’ll finish the cooking right before serving by sauteing the lobster meat in a bit of garlic butter (more on that in a minute).
After separating the meat from the shell (you can read more about the technique in this post on broiled lobster tails), you’ll place the lobster meat in the refrigerator and return the shells to the boiling water. Let the shells simmer in the water for about 20 minutes (which is just enough time to prepare the rest of the dish) and then strain the stock and discard the shells. Our lobster stock is ready! It’ll be added to the bisque after all of the other ingredients have been sauteed together.
And right before serving don’t forget to pull your lobster meat out of the fridge! Heat a bit of butter and a few smashed garlic cloves in a small skillet and saute the lobster until cooked through. Add to the soup right before serving.
harissa spiced lobster bisque
The rest of the soup is easy enough to make and involves the ingredients generally found in a bisque with one little addition: harissa! If you’re not familiar with harissa, it’s a delicious red chili pepper seasoning that can be found in both paste and powder form. The spicy condiment is thought to have originated in Tunisia, but is poplar all across Northern Africa and is becoming increasingly popular globally.
We like to use harissa in paste form for this recipe, which (if you live in the US) can easily be found at Trader Joe’s or online. Just note that harissa pastes can vary quite a bit in intensity so make sure to adjust the amount in your soup to taste. The chili paste adds a beautiful complexity to the soup and creates a wonderfully invigorating and spicy lobster bisque!
For more comforting soups and stews, make sure to check out these recipes!
- spicy smoked sausage and black bean soup
- mushroom barley soup
- summer corn and seafood stew
- belizean stew chicken
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