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Lemon and Lime Garlic Cream Soup

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Level: Intermediate

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Description

Hungarian cuisine contains a large repertoire of classics. So extensive is the list that one might never be inclined to look outside the recipe box of traditional favorites and try one of the newer ways of cooking ‘Hungarian style’. This is one of those recipes that is outside the traditional box and it’s a good example of the innovative side of the new Hungarian kitchen.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup Pine Nuts, Divided Use
  • ½ cups Cilantro, Finely Chopped, Divided Use
  • 5 Tablespoons Olive Oil, Divided
  • 2 heads Garlic, Peeled And Finely Minced
  • 1 whole Shallot Finely Minced
  • 1 whole Thai Green Chili, Seeded And Minced
  • 12 whole Shrimp, Large-sized: Shell Them And Reserve The Shells; Clean The Shrimp And Cut Them In Chunks
  • 5 Tablespoons White Wine
  • 8 cups Water
  • 2 cubes Vegetable Bouillon
  • 2 whole Lemons, Juiced And Zest Finely Minced, Divided Use
  • 1 teaspoon Turmeric
  • 1 whole Lime, Juiced And Zest Finely Minced, Divided Use
  • 1 cup Heavy Cream
  • ½ teaspoons Black Pepper, Fresh Ground, Or To Taste
  • ½ teaspoons Salt, Or To Taste

Preparation

You will also need:

1. A large, heavy pot.
2. A large strainer and a large bowl.
3. A heavy-bottomed frying pan in which to brown some of the pine nuts and cook the shrimp.
4. A wooden spoon or spatula.

Preparing the pine nuts for the soup and garnish:

1. In a dry, heavy-bottomed frying pan over medium heat, brown 2/3 cup of the pine nuts. Once browned, remove them from the pan and set them aside to cool. (Set the pan aside without washing it, to use later to cook the shrimp.)
2. Once the nuts are cool, chop them and mix them with half of the chopped cilantro. Set the mixture aside to use to garnish the soup before serving.

For the soup:

1. Heat 3 tablespoons of the olive oil in the large, heavy pot over medium heat and add the minced garlic, shallot, green chili, shrimp shells and the remaining 1/3 cup of the pine nuts. Cook, stirring everything around, until the shells turn a pinkish color—which will be in a few minutes.
2. Then add the wine and cook, stirring and heating until wine is reduced by half.
3. Add the water and bouillon cubes, 4 tablespoons of the lemon juice and half the minced lemon zest. Simmer the soup gently, covered, for 45 minutes.
4. Strain the soup into a large bowl. Then return it to the pot and add the turmeric, the lime zest, the rest of the lemon zest, the heavy cream and the lime juice.
5. In the pan that you used to brown the pine nuts, heat the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil over medium high heat. Add the pieces of shrimp and cook them quickly, moving them around with a wooden spoon or spatula. Sprinkle them with the salt and pepper, add the remaining lemon juice and the other half of the fresh, chopped cilantro. Set the shrimp aside, still in the pan, to keep them warm—or to briefly rewarm them if they grow cool.
6. When ready to serve the soup, place the bowls out on a counter. Heat the soup over a low heat, stirring occasionally, without bringing it to a boil. Warm the shrimp a little, if necessary. Place a small mound of shrimp in the middle of each bowl, ladle soup into the bowls and sprinkle them with the browned pine nuts and coriander garnish.

A note of acknowledgement: Lemon and Lime Garlic Cream Soup is adapted from a recipe in the Hungarian cooking magazine Konyha.

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