Bisque is a luxurious, velvety soup, which can be made with any crustaceans.

  • 500 g / 1¼ lb fresh lobster
  • 75 g / 3 oz / 6 tbsp butter
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 carrot, diced
  • 1 celery stick, diced
  • 45 ml / 3 tbsp brandy, plus extra for serving (optional)
  • 250 ml / 8 fl oz / 1 cup dry white wine
  • 1 litre / 1¾ pints / 4 cups fish stock
  • 15 ms / 1 tbsp tomato puree (paste)
  • 75 g / 3 oz / scant ½ cup long grain rice
  • 1 fresh bouquet garni
  • 150 ml / ¼ pint / ⅔ cup double (heavy) cream, plus extra to garnish
  • salt, ground white pepper, and cayenne pepper
  1. Cut the lobster into pieces. Melt half the butter in a large pan, add the vegetables and cook over a low heat until soft. Put in the lobster and stir until the shell on each piece turns red.
  2. Pour over the brandy and set it alight. When the flames die down, add the wine and boil until reduced by half. Pour in the fish stock and simmer for 2-3 minutes. Remove the lobster.
  3. Stir in the tomato puree and rice, add the bouquet garni and cook until the rice is tender. Meanwhile, remove the lobster meat from the shell and return the shells to the pan. Dice the lobster meat and set it aside.
    It is best to buy a live lobster, chilling it in the freezer until it is comatose and then killing it just before cooking. If you canít face the procedure, use a cooked lobster; take care not to over-cook the flesh. Stir for only 30-60 seconds.
  5. When the rice is cooked, discard all the larger pieces of shell. Tip the mixture into a blender or food processor and process to a puree. Press the puree through a fine sieve placed over the clean pan. Stir the mixture, then heat until almost boiling. Season with salt, pepper, and cayenne, then lower the heat and stir in the cream. Dice the remaining butter and whisk it into the bisque. Add the diced lobster meat and serve immediately. If you like, pour a small spoonful of brandy into each soup bowl and swirl in a little extra cream.
Lobster Bisque