Ever have a salmon bisque? Of course not! Neither did I until I made it myself. A true bisque is typically made with shellfish because the shells make a deeply flavored stock. It’s the shellfish stock, not the meat, that’s truly the key to making a great tasting bisque. Fish stock, wonderful as it is in many fish soups, chowders and stews, is just not flavorful enough for a bisque. But that doesn’t mean you can’t make a great fish bisque. Salmon, in particular, with its unique, almost shellfish-like flavor, when paired with a rich shellfish stock and/or clam juice can make an incredible salmon bisque!
1. It’s a lot easier than lobster bisque.
Lobster bisque is rarely made by home cooks because it’s just too time intensive. You have to cook the lobsters first, cool them down, then crack them open and pick out the meats (which can be tiring and tedious), return the shells to the water and then make and strain the stock. That’s about a two hour process. Once you’re done with that, then you make the bisque!
But with a salmon bisque you can use clam juice in place of lobster stock. And all you need is a fillet or two of salmon. From start to finish it only takes about 30-40 minutes.
2. Salmon bisque is cheaper than lobster bisque.
Lobsters ain’t cheap! Salmon isn’t either but it’s more affordable than those dang delicious but pricey bottom feeders.
3. The only bisque you’ve ever had is lobster bisque
99% of the time it’s the only bisque option you’ll find in restaurants. Why not try something new?
4. Salmon bisque tastes incredible
I recently hosted a bisque tasting party at my house. I know, who the hell does that?! This weirdo, that’s who. But, in my defense, I am in the process of writing a cookbook on New England seafood soups (perhaps that makes me even weirder) and I’m currently working on the bisque chapter. So I invited some local seafoodie friends over to try out four different types of bisques. Guess which one was the consensus favorite?
That’s right. Everyone loved it. This was my gut feeling because when I first made it I could not believe how good it was. It was so bisque-like that you’d never know it wasn’t a true bisque. But I still felt like I needed some confirmation and feedback from some friends. I’m glad they loved it as much as I did. I’m confident you will too! Let me know in the comments below how you like it and if you have any questions.
A simpler alternative to the time-intensive lobster bisque, salmon bisque is equally satisfying, rich and delicious!
Add 1 cup of cream and dill and stir in. Add up to 1 more cup of cream and additional sherry and/or dill, if desired, to taste. Add salt, to taste.
Craig Fear is the creator of Fearless Eating and the author of three books, The 30-Day Heartburn Solution, Fearless Broths and Soups and The Thai Soup Secret. After years helping clients with digestive issues, Craig decided to pursue writing full-time. He intends to write many more books on broths and soups from around the world! Click here to learn more about Craig.