Quick Brazilian Moqueca de Camaroes Soup

One plus of cooking at home more is that we can experiment with flavors from around the world. This is one of my favorite soups. It's a simple version of Moqueca (Brazilian fish stew). In it's full form, Moqueca is a stew with flavor notes that tell the history of its roots in slavery. West African and Portuguese influences can be tasted in this lovely dish that can be found throughout Brazil, but is signature to Bahia. Generally, a white fish such as cod is used to make the stew and it's served over rice. I've adapted it to a quick soup recipe with shrimp. Cooked rice can be added. If you want it to remain as a traditional thick stew, reduce the 3 cups of broth to 1/2 cup of broth and let the stew cook down before adding the shrimp.


  • 1 1/2 lbs. frozen raw jumbo shrimp, peeled and deveined. Tales left on.

  • 2 cups of my Classic Tomato Sauce (sub:1 14 oz can of stewed tomatoes, 3 cloves of garlic, and 1/2 medium onion, chopped and 2 TBS extra virgin olive oil in, pulsed in a processor or blender)

  • 2 TBS of red pepper paste (sub: 3 TBS of chopped sweet red peppers and 1/2 TBS of smoked paprika)

  • 2 tsp ground cumin

  • 1 coconut milk

  • 3 cups seafood broth (sub: vegetable or chicken)

  • salt and pepper to taste

  • 2 TBS fresh lime juice

  • 1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped

Optional add-ins 1/4 of diced celery, 2 TBS of of fresh or dried basil leaves, 2 TBS green onion as garnish, 1/4 cup dry white wine, 2 TBS hot sauce, 2 TBSwhite wine vinegar.


  1. In a 6-8qt sauce pan add tomato sauce, red pepper paste (or red peppers and smoked paprika), cumin and coconut milk.

  2. Heat pot over medium high heat. Using a whisk, stir ingredients as they heat up. This will help the coconut milk from curdling. If it does curdle, no worries, it'll still be delicious.

  3. Once they come to a boil, add broth and whisk. Bring to a boil again.

  4. Drop in frozen shrimp (fresh is fine, but it will cook quicker. Just be aware not to over cook them).

  5. Bring soup to a boil. Immediately turn off, and partially cover for 3-5 mins.

  6. Add lime juice and cilantro and serve immediately.

  7. Enjoy!

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