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Sopa de Cameron (Shrimp Soup)

Did you over indulge this Thanksgiving and feel like your body could use a lighter meal?  I have the perfect meal solution: Sopa de Cameron or Shrimp soup.   Easily made with shrimp, cilantro, onions, garlic, jalapeños, tomatoes, spices, seafood broth, lime juice and served with queso fresco and avocado.


  • 2 Tbs olive oil
  • 1 ½ cup diced white or yellow onion, about ¾ of a large onion
  • 4 stalks of celery, diced
  • 2 jalapeños, seeds removed (or not if you like it spicy), diced
  • 4 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 Tbs cumin
  • 1 Tbs paprika
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • ½ tsp cayenne pepper, double for wild stuff version
  • 1 large can of diced organic tomatoes (28 ounce) with juice
  • 1 can of tomato paste (4 ounces)
  • 4 cups of seafood stock, adjust based on how thick you prefer the soupreserve shells to make a quick and easy stock)
  • Carrot slices (optional for added sweetness and texture)
  • ½ cup lime juice – from 2 large limes
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Crumbled queso fresco, or grated monterrey jack cheese
  • Diced or sliced avocado
  • Finely chopped cilantro
  • Finely chopped green onions
  • Fresh jalapeño slices
  • Lime slices
  • Tortilla chips (if you can tolerate corn)
  1. To start the stock add 1 Tablespoon oil to a medium heat pan and add the shrimp shells to the pan. Stir fry the shells for about ten minutes until they get nice and pink. Add 4-5 cups of filtered water and 1 teaspoon of sea salt (or if you have Knorr shrimp bouillon cube, 1 cube). Reduce heat and simmer shells for about an hour.  This quick stock can be made day ahead of time and stored overnight in refrigerator.  When ready to use the stock, simply strain the shells (I like to squeeze excess water from shells to extract all that yummy shrimp flavor).
  2. To make the refrito or base for the soup, heat the oil in large pot.
  3. Add the onions, cilantro, jalapeños, crushed garlic, paprika, cayenne pepper, oregano, salt and pepper. Mix well and cook on low heat for about 10 minutes.
  4. Add the diced tomatoes with juice and cook for another 10 minutes.
  5. Add the seafood stock. Bring to a boil, add carrot slices if you’re using and then reduce to simmer for about an hour. When almost ready to serve, add the shrimp and cook until the shrimp are done (but not overcooked), about 5-8 minutes- more or less depending on the size of the shrimp. Adjust seasoning as needed.
  6. Add the lime juice and remove from the heat.
  7. Serve immediately garnished with queso fresco, tortilla chips, diced avocado, chopped cilantro, green onions and lime slices.



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