Shrimp Vegetable soup

Most people today are thinking about Valentine’s Day, which is tomorrow. But today marks the first day of Lent. Some of you may be looking for some meatless meal ideas.

For me soup is my choice for lunch. I like to have a soup that is packed full of vegetables. Normally I would use chicken or beef , but for the start of Lent I decided on a vegetable broth based soup with shrimp for the protein.

I didn’t want to make a soup with a heavy creamy base, so I went with vegetable broth and loaded with lots of vegetables. This is a simple soup, with a mild flavor and it turned out to be one of those great comfort foods. It made a great lunch, but would be wonderful for dinner with a salad.

Shrimp Vegetable Soup
12 ounces large shrimp, remove shells and save (more shrimp can be used)
3 cups of water
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large onion chopped
2 stalks celery chopped
1 1/2 cups carrots chopped
14.5 ounce can diced tomatoes
2 cups potatoes cubed
2 cups chopped cabbage
3 bay leaves
8 ounces of clam juice
32 ounces vegetable broth
Salt and pepper to taste
Remove the shells from the shrimp and place the shells into a small pan, cover with 3 cups of water. Bring  the water to a boil, reduce heat and simmer covered for 15 minutes. Strain the shrimp stock and discard shells.
In a large soup kettle, heat oil over medium heat and add onions, celery, carrots, and potatoes, stirring occasionally until the vegetable begin to soften about 6 to 8 minutes. Add the vegetable broth, shrimp stock, clam juice, tomatoes, bay leaves, and cabbage bring to a boil.
 Reduce heat and continue to simmer until potatoes, celery, and carrots are tender about 30 to 40 minutes. Add the shrimp to the soup and continue to simmer for another 2 to 3 minutes until the shrimp turns pink. Remove the bay leaves and serve.

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