I made this spicy shrimp and lobster bisque with poblano peppers and lots of cayenne powder. Heavy cream and charred sweet corn help soften the heat for an incredible dinner option.
I have to admit that I have never, ever in my adult life prepared lobster before. The only time I ever cooked lobster is when I was a kid. My dad’s boss sent him a live lobster dinner in the mail. Truthfully, cooking live lobsters was horrifying to me, and I never tried to make them again.
I fell in love with lobster when we lived in New York City and ate lobster rolls at Rockaway Beach. However, I actually never tried to recreate them at home.
I bought two 8-ounce lobster tails, frozen, from a local fish monger. I just now finally worked up the nerve to take them out of my freezer and cook them up. Because I had shrimp and corn, I decided to try my hand at a lobster bisque. I had a can of poblano peppers, so I imagined a spicy, creamy lobster bisque topped with charred corn.
The finished product was absolutely incredible. Rich, smooth and creamy without shying away from heat. However, the charred sweet corn and heavy cream help tone down the spiciness of this dish.
How I made this spicy shrimp and lobster bisque:
- Prepare a shrimp stock with shrimp shells
- Add the lobster and cook until just underdone (do not overcook it)
- Strain the stock
- Cook the aromatics and poblano peppers
- Make a roux with flour
- Slowly whisk in the stock and add a can of tomatoes
- Boil until thickened
- Add heavy cream and blend with an immersion blender
- Add shrimp and lobster and cook for 5 additional minutes until opaque
What’s your favorite way to enjoy lobster? Tell me in the comments!
If you made this recipe, please rate the recipe below and leave a comment to tell me how you liked it! If you take a picture of it, please tag me on Instagram so I can feature you in my feed!
Spicy Shrimp and Lobster Bisque
- Large pot
- Fine mesh sieve
- Sheet pan
- 4 tablespoons butter
- 1 yellow onion peeled and quartered
- 1 pound large shrimp, peeled and deveined shells and tails reserved (chop up half the shrimp and leave half the shrimp whole)
- 2 8-ounce lobster tails cut down the middle with kitchen shears
- 5 cups water
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 2 teaspoons neutral cooking oil
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1 yellow onion peeled and diced
- 8 ounce can poblano peppers drained
- 6 cloves garlic peeled and minced
- 3 tablespoons flour
- 4 cups prepared seafood stock
- 1 15-ounce can diced tomatoes
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- ½ teaspoon cayenne powder plus more to taste
- ½ cup heavy cream
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 4 ears corn husked and cut from the cob
- 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- Paprika, salt, and pepper to taste
- Paprika or cayenne powder optional
- Extra virgin olive oil optional
Prepare the Seafood Stock:
- Melt the butter into a large pot. Once melted and frothy, add the onion and cook for 6 minutes until it begins to soften. Add the shrimp shells and use a spoon to lightly mash them into the sides of the pot to release as much flavor as possible.
- Add the water and bring to a very low boil. Season liberally with salt and pepper. Reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes.
Cook the Lobster:
- Bring to stock to a low boil and add the lobster tails. Cook for about 7-8 minutes (less than 1 minute per ounce) until the shells are bright red and the lobster is almost cooked through.
- Transfer the lobster to an ice bath. Remove the tail meat from the shell in one piece and cut in half lengthwise. Transfer to the fridge until needed.
Strain the Stock:
- Carefully strain the stock into a heat-proof bowl through a fine mesh sieve and discard the shrimp shells and onion. Set the stock aside and carefully wipe out the pot and return it to the stove.
Prepare the Bisque:
- Melt the oil and butter in the same pot over medium heat. Once hot, add the onion and poblano peppers and cook for 8-10 minutes or until the onions begin to char and brown. Be careful not to burn them.
- Add the garlic and cook for 45 seconds or until fragrant.
- Sprinkle the flour over the aromatics and stir to coat. Cook for 1-2 minutes or until the flour begins to turn light golden brown.
- Using a ladle, add the prepared seafood stock, one ladle at a time. Whisk after each addition until all the stock has been incorporated. Bring to a very low boil and then reduce heat to low.
Cook the Bisque:
- Add the canned tomatoes, paprika, cayenne powder, salt, and pepper and cook for 25-30 minutes. Taste and season again.
Finish the Bisque:
- Using an immersion blender, blend until the broth is smooth and creamy. Stir in the heavy cream. Add the shrimp and cook for 4 minutes until they just begin to turn pink. Add the lobster and cook an additional 1-3 minutes or until both the shrimp and lobster are opaque and fully cooked through. Be careful not to overcook them.
Char the Corn:
- While the bisque is cooking, turn on the broiler. Arrange the corn on a sheet pan and drizzle with the oil. Season with salt, pepper, and paprika and toss to coat. Transfer to the broiler for 4-5 minutes (depending on your oven), turning occasionally, until the corn begins to char. Remove and set aside.
- Ladle the bisque into bowls and place a lobster half on top. Spoon the charred corn on top. Garnish with a sprinkle paprika or cayenne powder. Drizzle with extra virgin olive oil, if desired. Enjoy!