Tamarind Shrimp Soup
- SERVINGS: 12
- 10 cups water
- 1/2 cup (4 ounces) tamarind pulp with seeds (see Note)
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
- 1 pound medium shrimp, shelled and deveined, shells reserved
- 2 small red onions—1 coarsely chopped, 1 minced
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 1 1/2 cups cubed fresh pineapple (1/2-inch cubes)
- 1/2 jalapeño chile, seeded and minced
- Freshly ground pepper
- In a small saucepan, bring 2 cups of the water to a boil. Remove from the heat and add the tamarind pulp. Cover and let stand until softened, about 30 minutes. Pass the tamarind mixture through a coarse strainer; discard the seeds.
- Meanwhile, in a large saucepan, heat the oil. Add the shrimp shells and cook over high heat, stirring, until pink, about 3 minutes. Add the coarsely chopped onion and cook over moderately high heat, stirring, until softened and starting to brown, about 3 minutes. Add the tomato paste and cook, stirring, until it starts to caramelize, about 2 minutes. Add the remaining 8 cups of water and bring to a simmer, scraping up the browned bits on the bottom of the pan. Simmer over low heat for 30 minutes. Strain the broth and return it to the saucepan.
- Add the minced onion and the pineapple to the broth. Cover and simmer over low heat for 10 minutes. Stir in the tamarind puree and return to a simmer. Add the shrimp and cook over moderately high heat until opaque throughout, about 3 minutes. Add the jalapeño and season with salt and pepper. Serve hot.
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Congratulations to Mei Lin, winner of Top Chef Season 12.