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Brazilian Shrimp Soup
© Helene Dujardin

Brazilian Shrimp Soup

  • SERVINGS: 4
  • FAST

Coconut milk's rich flavor will keep you coming back for more of this substantial soup. A true Brazilian version would include slices of okra, but ours is already so satisfyingly thick that we left it out.

  1. 2 tablespoons cooking oil
  2. 1 onion, chopped
  3. 1 green bell pepper, chopped
  4. 3 cloves garlic, minced
  5. 3/4 cup long-grain rice
  6. 1/4 teaspoon red-pepper flakes
  7. 1 3/4 teaspoons salt
  8. 1 3/4 cups canned crushed tomatoes in thick puree (from one 15-ounce can)
  9. 5 cups water
  10. 1 cup canned unsweetened coconut milk
  11. 1 1/2 pounds medium shrimp, shelled and cut in half horizontally
  12. 1/4 teaspoon fresh-ground black pepper
  13. 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  14. 1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley or cilantro
  1. In a large pot, heat the oil over moderately low heat. Add the onion, bell pepper, and garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables start to soften, about 10 minutes.
  2. Add the rice, red-pepper flakes, salt, tomatoes, and water to the pot. Bring to a boil and cook until the rice is almost tender, about 10 minutes.
  3. Stir the coconut milk into the soup. Bring back to a simmer and then stir in the shrimp. Simmer, stirring occasionally, until the shrimp are just done, 3 to 5 minutes. Stir in the black pepper, lemon juice, and parsley.
Notes Variation Instead of the shrimp, use one pound of boneless, skinless chicken breasts (about three), cut crosswise into quarter-inch strips. Cook for the same amount of time.

Suggested Pairing

The sweet elements here call for a somewhat assertive sweetness in the wine as well. A Vouvray demi-sec, from France's Loire Valley, ought to strike just the right balance.