Coconut Curry Shrimp Soup

Winter isn’t over yet, and so soup is still on the menu! I’ve been making this decadent soup over and over all winter long. The best part about this soup is that it’s packed with veggies – NINE different ones, to be exact – but it brings such a great flavor that it’s an easy sell to friends and family alike. This soup has passed muster with my picky father, my veggie-loving but not spices-loving grandma, my partner who (claims to) not like coconut, and almost every other mouth that’s come in its path. 

This soup takes a bit of prep work, but cooks together really easily once all the chopping is done. I almost always make double the recipe because it’s just that good – it freezes well too, so save some for later! 

The recipe was adapted from this recipe from Dr. Mark Hyman

Coconut Shrimp Curry Soup

Ingredients:

For the Coconut Curry Sauce:

  • ¾ cup raw cashews; whole, halved, or crushed (1 cup of raw cashews needed in total)
  • 1 cup warm or hot filtered water
  • 14-ounce can of full-fat coconut milk
  • ½-inch to 1-inch piece fresh ginger, peeled* and cut into about 4 chunks for easier blending
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1½ to 2 tablespoons curry powder, or more to taste
  • ¼ teaspoon of red pepper flakes (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon of sea salt

For the soup:

  • 1-2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
  • 1-2 tablespoons of organic butter, salted or unsalted
  • 1-2 pounds of wild shrimp*; raw, peeled, deveined, and without the tail
  • A sprinkle of sea salt
  • 2 medium carrots; sliced into thin circle rounds or coarsely shredded
  • 1 organic red bell pepper; cored, seeded, and sliced or diced into bite-sized pieces
  • About 2 cups green cabbage, (optional); sliced into thin strips
  • ½ pound green beans*, ends removed and cut into 2 inch pieces
  • ¼ cup of whole or halved raw cashews (but not crushed)
  • About 1 cup* extra firm organic tofu; cut into small cubes about ¼ inch on each side 
  • 1 – 1.5 tablespoons of sea salt, or to taste
  • 1 cup filtered water
  • About 3 cups or 5 ounces of spinach
 

Steps:

  1. Make the coconut curry sauce by putting all the ingredients in a blender and blending for 1-3 minutes on a high speed until smooth.
  2. Make sure all veggies, shrimp, and tofu are prepped at this point. Heat the olive oil and butter in a large soup pot over medium heat until the butter is melted and the oil is hot. Add the shrimp in and sprinkle with sea salt. Cook, stirring frequently, until the shrimp lose their transparency, turn white and/or pink, and firm up – about 3 to 5 minutes. It’s better to err on the side of slightly undercooking the shrimp than to overcook it, as the shrimp will continue to cook through as the soup simmers.
  3. Add in the carrots, bell pepper, cabbage, green beans, cashews, tofu, sea salt, water, and Coconut Curry Sauce to the pot. Carefully stir and bring to a boil (this will take about 20-30 minutes), reduce the heat to simmer, then cover. It’s okay if it seems like there isn’t enough liquid broth at first – as the veggies cook they will release more of their own water.
  4. Stir frequently until the vegetables are tender, about 10 to 15 minutes. Adjust the seasoning with more curry powder and/or salt, if desired. The green beans will be the last vegetable to cook through, so taste them to determine when the soup has simmered enough.
  5. When the green beans are cooked to satisfaction, add in the spinach. Stir the spinach into the soup, covering with the hot broth, until it is wilted and reduced in volume, about 3 minutes.
  6. If desired, you can add 1 cup of filtered water to stretch the soup. Stir well.

Serve and enjoy! Delicious paired with rice. 

* Recipe Notes:

  • Many of the above quantities are variable. If you find yourself with extra vegetables or tofu leftover, add them in!
  • To easily peel ginger, scrape down the skin with a spoon. The skin should scrape off pretty easily. It’s okay if a few patches of skin remain. For this reason I like to buy the straightest piece of ginger I can find with the fewest branches.
  • Use 1 pound of shrimp to make this recipe more affordable. Use 2 pounds of shrimp for a more decadent soup. 1.5 pounds is a great balance of both, but unfortunately shrimp is not commonly sold in this quantity and therefore may be undesirable. For a soup with less, give the illusion of having more shrimp by cutting each individual shrimp into halves or thirds.
  • Save some time by selecting frozen green beans that are already pre-chopped. This may add to the cooking time, to allow the thawed green beans time to absorb the flavor of the broth.
  • 1 cup of tofu = roughly one third (1/3) of a 16-ounce package of tofu
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