Dominican Asopao de Camarones is one of my favorite seafood soups ever! It is packed with a ton of delicious refreshing, savory, and rich flavors. The soup is very easy to make and doesn’t take very long either.
And one of the benefits of making it is that it allows you to use leftover veggies too. This recipe is incredibly versatile and flexible.
What Is Asopao De Camarones?
Asopao de Camarones in English means shrimp and rice soup. This is a traditional Dominican soup recipe that is extremely popular! You can also find some versions of it in Puerto Rican cuisine, but from what I know, it’s predominantly Dominican in origin.
It also goes by other names such as shrimp and rice pottage, shrimp and rice stew, or simply, Dominican shrimp soup.
Now, this is a super versatile recipe. There is no set-in-stone technique or ingredients list that you have to follow.
Generally, this soup is made from rice, protein (in this case shrimp), tomato-based sauce, and some simple seasonings.
Ultimately, you can choose exactly what flavors you want to add and how much of them too.
The recipe I will make with you today is incredibly easy, allows you to use leftover produce in your fridge, and is uber-versatile too. It’s a budget-friendly dinner that can even be made in advance!
What To Do With Shrimp Heads And Skins
If you happened to prepare the shrimp from whole ones, you can make a quick shrimp stock with the offcuts.
To do this, bring roughly 2 quarts (8 cups) of water to a simmer over medium-high heat. Adding a lid will make the water boil much faster.
Add the clean offcuts to the water. Remove the water from the heat and leave it for an hour or so. The water will be mildly flavored with a fishy taste. This will further enhance the fishiness of your Asopao de Camarones soup (in the best way).
You can, of course, also make the seafood stock from scratch.
Expert Tips For Making The Best Asopao De Camarones
- Your rice is ready when it is tender, soft, and super juicy. The soup base should also not be too runny. This dish has a relatively chunky consistency. And remember, you won’t use all of the fish stock.
- The whole shrimp you add to the stock will be ready in a couple of minutes. They don’t take super long to cook, so test they’re done after about 5 minutes. After the initial test, they should be ready within another 1-3 minutes, depending on their size.
- You can also add other shellfish to your soup. Many recipes do include muscles, clams, and prawns.
- The best type of rice to use is long-grain rice. Short-grain rice varietals are often too starchy and will create a sticky mess.
What can you serve with this shrimp and rice soup?
Personally, I prefer serving this soup on its own. At the most, I will put some Homemade Garlic Bread or Pupusas on the side. It’s already such an incredibly hearty soup, it doesn’t need an accompaniment.
Is Asopao de Camarone healthy?
The only thing I would watch out for in this soup recipe is the salt content. Other than that, this soup is low in fat, super high in protein, and loaded with other nutrients. You can also take a look at the nutritional value of shrimp here.
Can I use frozen shrimp for this soup?
It is always best to use fresh seafood for dishes, but I know it’s not always available. And generally, frozen seafood is a lot cheaper than fresh. You can definitely use frozen shrimp for this recipe as well. Just make sure that it is completely thawed before adding it.
How do you know if shrimp is fresh?
Fresh shrimp should be almost completely odorless. If it smells like seafood (fishy), it isn’t fresh anymore. Then, you should also make sure the color is uniform and blemish-free. The shrimp should also not have any damage, and the flesh should be firm.
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Delicious Dominican Asopao de Camarones Recipe In 1 Hour
- 2.5 pounds jumbo shrimp, uncooked, peeled
- olive oil
- 1 large onion, diced
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 medium bell pepper, deseeded and diced
- 2 tbsp fresh parsley, minced
- 1 tbsp tomato paste
- 1.5 cups tomato sauce
- 2 limes
- 4-6 cups fish stock
- 1/2 tsp fine salt
- 2 cups long-grain rice
- 2 medium carrots, peeled and diced
- Sea salt flakes, to taste
- Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- First, mince about a third of your peeled and cleaned shrimp meat. Make sure it's evenly and finely chopped.
- In a stew pot, add the olive oil over low-medium heat. Add the onion and allow it to sweat for about 5 minutes or until it becomes translucent.
- Next, add the minced garlic, bell peppers, chopped parsley, and tomato paste. Allow them to cook over medium heat for a minute.
- Add the minced shrimp and cook the ingredients for another minute. Make sure to stir them well to prevent them from sticking.
- Now, add the tomato sauce and the juice of 1 lime. Mix the ingredients very well to ensure the base has been uniformly distributed throughout the tomato sauce.
- Add 1/3 cup of fish stock or water along with the fine salt.
- Increase the heat to medium-high and bring the soup to a boil. Again, stir every now and then to prevent the soup from catching at the bottom of the pot.
- Once boiling, add the rice, diced carrots. Stir the ingredients in well.
- Now, here is where you need to concentrate. Add a cup of hot fish stock to the rice mixture. Allow the rice to cook while you stir often. Once the liquid is absorbed, add more stock. Again, leave the rice to cook until all the liquid is absorbed. Add more stock.
- Repeat the step above until your rice is completely cooked. You will not have to use all of the stock!
- Once the rice is completely cooked, you can add the rest of the shrimp to it and allow them to cook. It will take about 7 minutes. But check their progress after 5.
- Finally, adjust the seasoning with sea salt and black pepper.
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