Happy Cinco de Mayo!
I enjoy authentic Mexican restaurants for their homemade tortillas, expansive varieties of lush moles, fresh Mexican cheeses and sour creams, and the occasional sip of aged tequila. Before ordering anything, I always scan the menu for Coctel de Cameron or Caldes de Cameron, the most common names for what I recognize simply as “Shrimp Soup.” If the dish is offered, I am compelled to try it, no matter how fabulous everything else may look. While different restaurants may serve this dish hot or cold, and with varying degrees of spice, the ingredients are almost universal – plump shrimp, diced onion, and fresh avocado in a zippy, tomato laced broth, topped with chopped cilantro. I think I just made myself hungry. Let me know when your Shrimp Soup is ready… I’ll be right over!
4 cups chicken stock
1 jalapeno pepper
1 cup salsa (homemade or from the market, mild or hot, your choice)
1 pound of shrimp, cooked and peeled
1 small red onion, chopped
1 large avocado, halved and sliced
1 cup chopped cilantro, loosely packed
Step 1) Add chicken stock to large pot. Open your jalapeno pepper halfway by cutting an “X” through the bottom of the pepper almost all the way up to the stem. Add jalapeno pepper to chicken stock.
Step 2) Bring stock and pepper to a boil; reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes.
Step 3) Remove pepper and discard. For cold soup, chill the pepper-infused stock in the freezer before proceeding with the next step. For warm soup, leave stock on stovetop over low heat and continue…
Step 4) Add salsa, shrimp, and onion, and half of the cilantro to the stock. Stir, and ladle into serving bowls.
Step 5) Top each bowl with sliced avocado and the remaining half of the chopped cilantro. Serve immediately.