Chupe de Camarones – Peruvian Shrimp and Potato Chowder
- This hearty chowder is a favorite in Peru, where it is often made with crayfish. The typical preparation is to boil the crayfish, process the cooked crayfish in a blender with some of the caldo (broth), and then to add the puréed crayfish back to the stew to thicken it. Other traditional ingredients include yellow potatoes, aji chile peppers, corn, milk and queso fresco cheese. Chupe de camarones is usually served with a poached egg and garnished with several whole crayfish.
This “quick and easy” version of chupe de camarones is less complicated to prepare, but still rich and full of flavor.
- 1 pound raw shrimp (unpeeled)
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 tablespoons butter
- Juice of 1 lime
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 tablespoons jarred aji amarillo paste (or 1 aji amarillo pepper, seeded and minced)
- 1 tablespoon aji panca paste
- 2 tomatoes, seeded and diced
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano, or 1 tablespoon minced fresh oregano
- 1 packet of Goya seasoning with achiote
- 3 cups seafood or chicken stock
- 1 1/2 pounds medium yellow potatoes
- 1 1/2 cups frozen peas
- 3 ears of fresh corn, or 2 cups frozen corn kernels
- 1 12-ounce can of evaporated milk
- 1 cup crumbled queso fresco cheese
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1. Heat the olive oil and butter in a heavy soup pot over medium high heat. Add the shrimp and sauté until pink, about 3-4 minutes. Remove shrimp to a bowl and let cool.
- 2. Add chopped onion, garlic, and aji chile pepper pastes to the soup pot. Sauté over medium heat until onion is translucent and fragrant. Add tomatoes, cumin, Goya seasoning, and oregano and cook until tomatoes are soft.
- 3. Peel the potatoes and cut into 1 inch cubes. Add potatoes to pot with the seafood broth, and simmer until potatoes are very tender, about 15-20 minutes.
- 4. While potatoes are cooking, peel shrimp (reserving several shrimp unpeeled for garnish, if desired). Season shrimp with salt and pepper and toss with the lime juice. Set aside.
- 5. Slice one ear of corn crosswise into 2 inch pieces, and remove kernels from remaining 2 ears. Add corn pieces and corn kernels to pot along with the peas. Simmer for 2-3 minutes more.
- 6. Remove chowder from heat, and stir in evaporated milk and queso fresco cheese. Stir in shrimp with the lime juice and season chowder with salt and pepper to taste.
- 7. Serve chupe in bowls, garnished with shrimp, crumbled queso fresco cheese, and chopped fresh oregano or cilantro.