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Recipe courtesy of Rosa Ross

Lacassa Soup

Every Christmas Eve, after the tree was done, we sat down to an early supper, which was always the same, a light but tasty menu of fish empanadas was served with Lacassa Sopa de Camarao, a meatless shrimp soup. This soup was a perfect blending of Southeast Asian and Portuguese influences. We all loved this tasty soup, but at our house it was only ever served on Christmas Eve.
  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 1 hr
  • Active: 45 min
  • Yield: 4 to 6 servings
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3/4 pound medium shrimp

1 large or 2 medium ripe tomatoes

2 ounces rice stick noodles

2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil

1 clove garlic, peeled and crushed

2 tablespoons finely minced shallots

2 teaspoons balichao, or shrimp paste


1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper

2 scallions, green and white parts, finely minced


  1. Peel and devein the shrimp, reserving the shells. Combine the shrimp shells with 6 cups of water in a stockpot. Bring to a boil and simmer until the broth tastes of shrimp, about 15 minutes. Strain and discard the shells.
  2. Peel and remove the seeds from the tomato and cut into a fine dice. Soak the rice noodles in a small bowl of warm water until soft. Drain and reserve. Cut into manageable lengths, if desired.
  3. Heat the oil in a deep saucepan and saute the garlic until just brown. Remove and discard. Add the shallots and cook over medium heat until soft. Add the balichao and cook until aromatic. Add the shrimp broth, bring to a simmer and add the shrimp, the rice noodles and the tomatoes. Cook gently until the shrimp just turns pink. Season with salt and pepper. Sprinkle with the scallions, stir to just wilt and serve.

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