2 lbs medium Shell-On Shrimp (41-50 size)
4 TB Butter, divided
1 medium Yellow Onion, diced
2 medium Carrots, peeled and diced
1 medium Celery Stalk, diced
1/2 tsp Old Bay Seasoning
2 Bay Leaves
1 tsp Kosher Salt
1/2 tsp Ground Black Pepper
2 TB Tomato Paste with Garlic
4 cups Water
4 TB Flour
3/4 cup Dry White Wine
1 tsp Lobster Base
1/4 tsp Cayenne Pepper
1/2 cup Heavy Cream
Peel the shrimp and reserve the shells. Chop the shrimp in half and place in a glass bowl; refrigerate until needed.
In a large saucepan, melt 1 TB butter over medium-high heat. When butter begins to simmer, add the onions, carrots, celery, Old Bay, and bay leaves and saute for 3 minutes. Add the reserved shrimp shells on top of the vegetables, sprinkle with salt and pepper, stir and cover the pot. Cook for 5 minutes longer, until the shells are pink and vegetables are softened.
Increase the heat to medium-high, add the water to the pot and stir to combine. Bring stock to a boil, reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 30 minutes. Use a colander lined with a paper towel or coffee filter to strain the stock through to filter out the solids, then discard the solids.
Rinse out the saucepan and return to the stove. Over low heat melt 3 TB butter. When the butter is melted, add the flour to the butter and blend with a spoon to create a roux. Keep stirring until mixture is a golden brown, about 3 minutes.
Add the white wine and lobster base to the pot and stir to combine, then add the reserved stock to the pot. Bring mixture to a low boil, then add the cayenne and the shrimp to the pot. Stir and simmer for about 5 minutes or just until the shrimp are pink. Reduce the heat to low, add the cream to the pot and season to taste with salt and pepper, if needed.
Serve this soup with crusty french bread or baked clam shells. Serves 5 - 6 as a main course, or about 8 as a first course. Enjoy!!