Red Pepper Bisque, with Scallops (optional) – from Aimee’s kitchen
1 leek or onion, finely chopped
1 medium potato, cubed
4-5 red peppers, deseeded and chopped
2-4 cups chicken or veg. broth
1-2 c. heavy cream or cream sauce*
1 lb scallops, rinsed and drained**
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
2-4 tbsp. butter
Melt butter in soup pot. Add leeks and cook for a few minutes. Add potato and broth. Cook covered on med. heat until potatoes are nearly tender. Add peppers and cook about 5 minutes more, until both peppers and potatoes are tender. Remove from heat. Add cream and puree soup, adding more stock or cream to desired consistency and to taste. Add salt and pepper to taste. Put pot back on burner, on low heat. Add scallops and cook a few minutes more, until scallops are thoroughly cooked, but still tender. This will serve 4-6 people and is great with crusty bread and a nice salad.
*If you do not have cream on hand, you can make cream sauce. Melt 2-4 tbsp. butter in a pot. Add 2-4 tbsp. flour and whisk. Add 1-2 cups milk and cook over med. high heat, stirring all the while, until thickened. (More butter and flour makes a thicker sauce, less makes a thinner sauce.)
**For a vegetarian version, omit the scallops and top with croutons instead.