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Frugal Seafood Bisque

This recipe comes from Liz Alderson who runs a UK recipe site called <click here>

The title of the site really speaks for itself but if you would like to find out more about Liz, its creator and editor, then have a look at her page under the Biography section <click here>

This seafood bisque recipe is a great way of getting double value from the expensive lobster that you've just served to your dinner party guests - a recipe that gets the last bits out of your shellfish.

The main flavour of a bisque comes from the stock which is made from the shell - the only thing missing from this bisque will be the bits of lobster floating around - all the taste will be there.

You could of course use crab or prawn (shrimp) shells for the stock as an alternative - it's a way to recycle bits you would normally throw away.

The addition of a few defrosted prawns (shrimp) or a tin of crabmeat make this a great seafood bisque.

Every time I have a dressed crab or lobster, I make a stock out of the shells and freeze it. It can be used as the basis for a seafood bisque recipe anytime.


1 lobster shell
1 onion, peeled and chopped
1 carrot, peeled and chopped
2 sticks of celery, destringed and chopped
2 tbspns oil
2 tbspns brandy
2 pints (1.2l) water
1/4 pint (150ml) white wine
2 oz (50g) white long grain rice
1 small tin (200g) chopped plum tomatoes
1 small can of crab meat or a few cooked peeled prawns (shrimp)
pepper to taste
thick cream to serve


  • Take your lobster shell, wrap it in a tea towel and bash it with a rolling pin.
  • Heat the oil in a large pan and soften the onion, carrot and celery. Add the water and the shell and simmer for about 30 minutes.
  • Strain very carefully and use about 1/2 pint (300ml) to boil your rice until it's soft.
  • Put the rest of the stock into a large pan. Pour the brandy into a metal ladle and heat until it flames.
  • Add this to the stock along with the wine and tomatoes and leave it to simmer for about 20 minutes.
  • Combine the stock with the rice and process until smooth. You can do this in a blender, processor or by pushing through a seive.
  • Add your crab meat or prawns and reheat. Taste and season with pepper as necessary.
  • Pour into bowls and add a dollop of cream - serve with crusty bread and butter

Serves 4

Liz Alderson

For more seafood recipes go to