Spinach & Scallop Soup

Spinach & Scallop Soup

Spinach & Scallop Soup

The unexpected combination of ingredients in this dish yields a soup that would be right at home on any upscale restaurant menu.  Tender, sweet scallops are the perfect addition to this light, slightly creamy broth that is flavored with red peppers, a touch of heat from crushed red peppers, and earthy spinach.  This soup was a pleasant surprise to me, and I think you'll agree it is fabulous.  And best of all, it's quick and easy to make. Serves 8

2 ounces butter

1 cup diced red bell pepper

1 cup diced onion

4 cups low-salt chicken broth

3 cups thinly-sliced spinach leaves, packed

1/2 cup heavy cream

1/2 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper (less if you don't like heat, but don't omit)

1 pound fresh or thawed, frozen bay scallops

1/4 cup chopped fresh basil

Melt butter in a heavy soup pot over medium heat.  Add the bell pepper and onion and saute until almost tender.  Add the broth, spinach, cream, and crushed red pepper.  Cover the pan and simmer until the spinach is tender.  Add the scallops and simmer (don't boil) uncovered until just opaque in the center.  Mix in the basil.  Season soup to taste with salt and pepper.

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