Soup season is back! I would be hard-pressed to nominate my favourite soup, but chupe de camarones is definitely in the top 5. As it happens with most Peruvian dishes, it all starts with onion, garlic and ají (chilli). Ají panca (dried red Peruvian chilli) paste can be found in certain ethnic markets or you can sub another red chilli paste.
It also features Andean staples such as habas (broad beans), papas (potatoes) and choclo (corn). Rice is also an important ingredient, but you can sub cauliflower rice, quinoa, etc.
Chupe de camarones
- 4 whole king or tiger prawns (to garnish)
- 450g peeled prawns (if you bought them unpeeled, follow the optional step below)
- 1 tbsp oil
- 1 red onion, finely diced
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 tbsp ají panca paste
- 3 cups fish stock
- 2 small potatoes
- 1/2 cup pumpkin, finely diced
- 1 cup frozen or fresh broad beans
- 1/2 cup frozen or fresh peas
- 1/2 cup corn kernels
- 1 cup cooked rice or 2 cups cauliflower rice
- salt, pepper and oregano, to taste
- 2 tbsp cream
- 4 poached or fried eggs
- coriander leaves, to serve
- Optional: If you bought unpeeled prawns, peel them (remember to reserve 4 to garnish) and pop the heads and shells in a pot and heat until bright red. Add the stock and simmer for 10-15 minutes. Drain and reserve the stock.
- Heat 1 oil in a pot. add onion, garlic and ají panca and cook at low heat for 10-15 minutes.
- Add stock, potatoes and pumpkin. Cook at medium heat for 15-20 minutes.
- Add broad beans, peas, corn and cauliflower rice (if using). Season with salt, pepper and oregano. Cook for another 10 minutes.
- Add cooked rice (if using) and all prawns, cook until prawns are bright red (approx. 5 minutes). Add cream, check seasoning and turn off heat.
- Serve soup and garnish with one whole prawn, a poached/fried egg and a few coriander leaves per bowl.