Yesterday my heart exploded.

Apparently, the universe has decided to reward my inner 13-year old self by sending Boyz II Men, 98 degrees and New Kids on the Block out on tour. Like… an actual concert. Like an actual concert in my city. Like… I need to find some friends who actually want to go with me to this actual concert in my actual city.

Do you even REALIZE that half of my life is spent belting out On Bended Knee in my kitchen while I put things on french bread and call it pizza and make cupcakes because I’m too lazy to make a whole cake? Well – wait, okay. A large portion of my life is spent doing that and on most days you can replace On Bended Knee with anything by old school Mariah, Whitney Houston, TLC and/or En Vogue. And yeah yeah, I realize the 90s references are getting old but uh, that is my life. I cannot make this up. I’m about ten seconds away from breaking out my crimping iron (…still at my parents’ house…) and making a candy strip friendship bracelet. For you, of course! Because I love you. Times infinity for listening to (reading?) my incorrigible rambles.

Which brings me to… bisque. Which is really just a high maintenance soup, right? I don’t even know how someone obsessed with neon and sub-par boy bands can eat a classy soup, let alone make it herself and talk about it to her invisible internet friends. It doesn’t seem proper. It’s embarrassing and and befuddling.

I think that’s my new favorite word.

Sidebar: I just ate two cookies. I will tell you about them tomorrow. I don’t even know what to do with myself right now. I think the answer is to eat another cookies.

This recipe was not born from my brain at all – not by a long shot – the idea was sent to me by a reader (hi aaron!) who loves the asiago bisque a local shop near him serves. I have no clue if I even came close to the mark attempting to recreate such a delicious mess at home, but was easily sold on this whole asiago and soup thing. Two things I love. Yes yes.

How to explain it? ummm… it sort of melts in your mouth. The way that only shrimp and bisque can. It’s even better when you eat like three or four pieces of buttered talonica bread soaked in said bisque, alongside said bisque. With said (crisp) white wine.

But I would know nothing about that.


Asiago Shrimp Bisque

Yield: serves 4-6

Total Time: 1 hour


1 pound uncooked peeled and deveined shrimp, patted dry with a paper towel
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 cleaned and trimmed leeks, sliced
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1/3 cup cognac or brandy
1/4 cup dry sherry
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
4 tablespoons flour
4 cups seafood/fish stock
1 cup half and half
1 cup heavy cream
1/3 cup tomato paste
12 ounces asiago cheese, freshly grated
fresh chopped herbs for topping
crusty, toasted bread!


Heat a large pot over medium heat and add olive oil. Add in leeks with a 1/4 teaspoon of salt and pepper, tossing to coat and allowing to cook until softened, about 5-6 minutes. Add in garlic, red pepper flakes, shrimp and remaining salt and pepper. Stir well and cook for an additional 4-5 minutes, until shrimp is pink. Add in the brandy and sherry, cooking for 5 more minutes then turn off heat.

Transfer the entire mixture to a food processor (or a large bowl first, whichever is easy), then pulse until the shrimp and leeks are coarsely chopped but not pureed. Return the pot to the stovetop over medium heat. Add in butter, and once sizzling add in flour, whisking well to create a roux. Cook for 2-3 minutes until golden brown, then add in the half and half and heavy cream, stirring well until slightly thickened, about 5 minutes or so. Whisk in the stock, tomato paste and asiago, stirring until the cheese melts and the soup is smooth. Add the shrimp mixture back into the soup and reduce the heat to low, stirring well. Let sit over low heat, stirring occasionally, for about 10-15 minutes. Taste and season additionally if needed. Serve with additional asiago, fresh herbs and toasted bread.

[slightly adapted from ina]

I mean, this soup has brandy in it. You should probably eat it.

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89 Responses to “Asiago Shrimp Bisque.”

  1. #
    Meg @ Peaches and Cake — January 23, 2013 @ 8:00 am

    Mmm I want to eat that shrimp right out of the food processor! This is very gourmet of you. ;)


  2. #
    Aimee @ ShugarySweets — January 23, 2013 @ 8:09 am

    I was all on the fence until your last sentence. it has brandy in it. YUM.


  3. #
    Kim in MD — January 23, 2013 @ 8:11 am

    Boyz II Men, 98 degrees and New Kids on the Block out on tour? I know you are in heaven! The bisque looks so delicious, Jessica!


  4. #
    Jennifer @ Peanut Butter and Peppers — January 23, 2013 @ 8:25 am

    Oh my gosh, Boyz II to Men, you crack me up!!! Your bisque looks friggen delish!!! Yum!


  5. #
    Averie @ Averie Cooks — January 23, 2013 @ 8:27 am

    When I was growing up, my mom would make shrimp bisque with sherry for very special occasions, like once a year maybe. This post brings back memories!


  6. #
    Liz @ Tip Top Shape — January 23, 2013 @ 8:34 am

    This looks delicious!!!


  7. #
    Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat — January 23, 2013 @ 8:35 am

    Ahh my co-workers were talking about the concert yesterday! This may be a silly question, but are you going? If I lived in your city, I’d totally be there with ya!


  8. #
    Robyn Stone | Add a Pinch — January 23, 2013 @ 8:39 am

    I heard that on the radio. Little Buddy then asked who they were. Broke my heart. Then we listened to all of my favorite songs! :)

    And this bisque looks perfect. YUM!


  9. #
    Amanda @ The Dormestic Goddess — January 23, 2013 @ 8:58 am

    OMGOMGOMGOMGOMG <– My reaction to both the soup and the concert. I've never made bisque because I've never had reason to…and now I have reason to!


  10. #
    Brie @ Entrée the Giant — January 23, 2013 @ 9:00 am

    The boys are comin’ to Boston too – just heard that this morning!

    PS – it’s a little messed up that you referenced a cookie you haven’t yet told us about, but I guess I’ll just have to come back tomorrow :)


  11. #
    Ali @ Peaches and Football — January 23, 2013 @ 9:11 am

    Your heart may stop and I may be subsequently banned from this blog but I was never a NKOTB, 98 Degrees, or Boyz to Men kinda girl. I think I was a little too young for NKOTB and really don’t know more than one or two of the other groups’ songs, but if there was a Backstreet Boys / N Sync reunion tour I’d definitely look into that because I know ALL the lyrics to those songs. :)


  12. #
    Madison — January 23, 2013 @ 9:23 am

    My goodness—so decadent looking. This reminds me of a soup my mom makes during the summer, similar to this but then she fries some oysters and puts them on top. YUM-O!


  13. #
    Kelly — January 23, 2013 @ 9:27 am

    How my heart would flutter, if only *NSYNC would also be on that tour. le sigh. This soup looks killer!


  14. #
    Peghello — January 23, 2013 @ 9:29 am

    So….where do you buy fish stock, or do you make your own? This looks amazing!


    • Jessica — January 23rd, 2013 @ 9:48 am

      I can find it at my local grocery store.


  15. #
    Stefanie @ Sarcastic Cooking — January 23, 2013 @ 9:40 am

    Shrimp bisque kinda freaks me out…. I don’t know why. I have to maybe … in my brother’s words, “sac up sally” and try this!


  16. #
    Jenna — January 23, 2013 @ 9:43 am

    Yum this sounds wonderful! Where do you buy your seafood stock?


    • Jessica — January 23rd, 2013 @ 9:47 am

      I get it at my local grocery store!


  17. #
    Sweeney — January 23, 2013 @ 9:47 am

    Asiago is the BEST in everything! Last night, I made your spinach artichoke linguine and subbed in asiago for the parm and it was DELICIOUS! The first time I made it w/the parm, it was good but this time, it was out of this world creamy.


  18. #
    Erin@LawStudentsWife — January 23, 2013 @ 9:49 am

    “Tearin’ Up my Heart” was definitely on my wedding’s “Must Play” list for the DJ!
    This creamy bisque looks perfect to battle the freakishly cold windchill outside today.


  19. #
    julie — January 23, 2013 @ 10:01 am

    I think a suitable answer to anything is to eat another cookie!!


  20. #
    Kaitlin @4loveofcarrots — January 23, 2013 @ 10:17 am

    yum, I love shrimp and bisque is really the best kind of soup out there!


  21. #
    Sabatino @ — January 23, 2013 @ 10:17 am

    This is the perfect soup for such a cold day like today! I would add in a little sriracha, but that’s only because I like sriracha on EVERYTHING.


  22. #
    Whitney @ Whitney Brooke — January 23, 2013 @ 10:19 am

    uhhhh I will go to that freaking concert with you. Water Runs Dry is my jam. And I’m making this soup ASAP.


  23. #
    sally @ sallys baking addiction — January 23, 2013 @ 10:22 am

    this is everything I want and more today. Jessica, the wind chill is 8 degrees here in Maryland!!! I am freezing my tush off. A creamy bowl of bisque with… wait for it… my favorite cheese in the WORLD… and shrimp… amazing, perfection. Love everything about this. I still love 98 degrees and “I do (cherish you)” still makes my heart melt.


  24. #
    joelle (on a pink typewriter) — January 23, 2013 @ 10:33 am

    Cute scalloped spoon in your photo! We have a couple too.. I feel like it has a specific purpose (compared to being a cuter looking version of a regular spoon), but I have no idea what it is haha.


    • Jessica — January 23rd, 2013 @ 3:51 pm

      I’m pretty sure it was labeled as a butter spoon in mine!


  25. #
    Christine @ Cooking with Cakes — January 23, 2013 @ 10:42 am

    when there’s Asiago involved, you’ve got me listening!!!!!

    as an Italian I think it’s really one of the most underrated cheeses – so sharp and nutty, you don’t need a lot for it to give any dish the perfect punch. great choice! xx


  26. #
    Amy W — January 23, 2013 @ 10:49 am

    Incorrigible AND beffudled in one post? Clearly you ARE as classy as this soup! :)

    Looks amazing, as always!


  27. #
    Marcia J. — January 23, 2013 @ 10:51 am

    Your taste in 90’s music is impeccable (and by impeccable I mean mirrors my I am playing the 90’s R&B station on radio. com on my computer right now. Yesterday, i was so disappointed to see that tickets aren’t on sale for that concert in my city yet. :(

    Anyway, the bisque sounds amazing. I can’t wait to try it the next weekend I have enough free time to actually


  28. #
    cindy — January 23, 2013 @ 10:54 am

    I was most definitely singing “End of the road…” at my husband just days ago…he is always confused by my knowledge of 90’s ballads. Now I have “Never Gonna Get it…” running through my brain and I still wish I could be one of those En Vogue ladies in their satiny dresses and elbow length gloves. It’s a classy look!


  29. #
    Emily — January 23, 2013 @ 11:09 am

    Um, I sent a message to all my friends about the boy band trifecta so we could start planning…So excited they are coming to Pittsburgh!!! We also decided who ever came up with the name “The Package Tour” won yesterday! ;)

    This soup looks amaze. Can’t wait to try it!


  30. #
    Sarah R. — January 23, 2013 @ 11:30 am

    but it looks sooo good before it gets processed- I just wanna dive into the pot of shrimp and leeks. Or you know, have a mound of that on a plate with a baked potato?


  31. #
    Meagan @ Scarletta Bakes — January 23, 2013 @ 11:39 am

    I could say something super cheesy and cringe-worthy here, like I’m down on bended knee for this soup. But I’ll spare you the icky today… suffice it to say this post made my heart explode a little, too, and I’m looking forward to hearing about those two cookies…


    • Jessica — January 23rd, 2013 @ 3:51 pm



  32. #
    Miss Migas — January 23, 2013 @ 11:43 am

    Wow, this dish looks just SO perfect. The combination of ingredients is awesome!


  33. #
    Little Kitchie — January 23, 2013 @ 11:46 am

    My mouth is WATERING reading through that recipe. YUM!


  34. #
    Danielle — January 23, 2013 @ 12:04 pm

    Yes, please. The end.


  35. #
    Holiday Baker Man — January 23, 2013 @ 12:07 pm

    Perfect for these wintery days.


  36. #
    Morgan — January 23, 2013 @ 12:16 pm

    Ohh I have always wanted to try making shrimp bisque. It’s just the idea of whirring up plump, delicious shrimp that scares me. But when sherry and cognac is also an ingredient? I don’t think I can resist. Thanks for sharing, Jessica (and Aaron) :)


  37. #
    Annie @ Annie's City Kitchen — January 23, 2013 @ 12:34 pm

    I’m starving at my desk at work and my options are string cheese or dry cereal and then you go and put some Asiago Shrimp Bisque in my face and it’s really rude! Because this looks AH-MAZ-ING.


  38. #
    Mary @ The Kitchen Paper — January 23, 2013 @ 12:45 pm

    Oh this looks delicious! Perfect for a freaking cold day. I’d totally go to the concert with you – if I lived anywhere near you!


  39. #
    Amber (Sprinkled With Flour) — January 23, 2013 @ 12:48 pm

    I’ve never even thought of a shrimp bisque, but I don’t know why…it sounds amazing! And that asiago cheese puts it over the top. :) Love it!


  40. #
    Madeline @ Food Fitness and Family — January 23, 2013 @ 1:02 pm

    This looks unreal. I can’t wait to make it!


  41. #
    stacy t — January 23, 2013 @ 1:22 pm

    oh dear god…..i AM making this. i actually just might bathe in it.


  42. #
    Anna D. — January 23, 2013 @ 1:26 pm

    This looks phenomenal. No surprise. I didn’t know you take reader requests… Could you please do something with avocados and plantains??? We’ve been doing a lot with guac and plantains, and I just know you would work wonders with the combo!


  43. #
    Tracy — January 23, 2013 @ 1:45 pm

    I had a lb of shrimp and no ideas, THANK YOU


  44. #
    Ashley @ Wishes and Dishes — January 23, 2013 @ 2:15 pm

    Oh if I lived near you I’d totally hit up a Boys 2 Men concert!!!!!!!! They occupy a lot of space on my ipod, currently. Not ashamed to say it…. :)


  45. #
    collette — January 23, 2013 @ 2:19 pm

    I want some NOW!!!


  46. #
    Alaina @ Fabtastic Eats — January 23, 2013 @ 3:17 pm

    omg. I want this desperately. why oh WHY won’t my husband eat seafood. its such a tragedy for my shrimp loving self. Can I make a whole pot & eat it by myself?! ;)


    • Jessica — January 23rd, 2013 @ 3:49 pm



  47. #
    Ruby @ The Ruby Red Apron — January 23, 2013 @ 3:17 pm

    OOOOOh shrimp has a been on my mind a lot lately. I love the sound of this shrimp bisque!


  48. #
    Melissa D — January 23, 2013 @ 3:29 pm

    I caught the last half of “The View” yesterday. And promptly created a New Kids On The Block channel on Pandora. And listened to it all afternoon. Further cemented my children’s belief that Mom is weird.

    And I am jealous that they are going to be in your city, becuase they aren’t really coming anywhere near mine.


  49. #
    Sarah — January 23, 2013 @ 4:13 pm

    I will totally go to that concert with you. Pittsburgh and Cleveland are about equal distance from me, and the closest they will be. I LOVE NKOTB and saw them 4 years ago in Erie, while I was 7 months pregnant.


  50. #
    Larry — January 23, 2013 @ 8:13 pm

    ♪ I wanna be downnnn with what you’re going through
    I wanna be downnnn I wanna be down with you!
    No matter the tiiiiiiiiiime of day or night it’s true
    I wanna be dowowowowowowowwwwwwn! ♪
    You said it had Brandy in it…



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