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Scallop Bisque with Pesto Cheese Straws

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Scallop Bisque with Pesto Cheese Straws
Serves 6 Easy
Total: Active:
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Ingredients (20)

  • 1 1/2 lbs small bay scallops chopped
  • 1/2 small fennel bulb thin sliced
  • 2 shallots fine diced
  • 1 potato diced (cooked and then mashed) no skins
  • 4 cups heavy cream
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 cup fish broth, or vegetable broth
  • 1 teaspoon fresh thyme
  • 1 bay leaf
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Olive oil to saute shallots and fennel
  • 12 large scallops as a garnish
  • 1/4 cup dried bread crumbs for the scallop garnish
  • 1 egg for the scallop garnish
  • Butter to saute the scallop garnish
  • 1 package of Pillsbury Bread Sticks
  • 1/4 cup pesto (I used jarred, but you can make your own)
  • 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
  • 1 teaspoon paprika as a garnish
  • Fennel fronds as a garnish

This a quick and easy bisque to make. I wouldn’t call it the best for those who are calorie concious but I don’t make it very often and when I do, I use as just a small bowl and a starter. In fact when I serve this, I love to serve it in coffee mugs and add a skewer of seared scallops and a pesto cheese straw as a garnish. It is always a favorite with my friends and family.

I do take advantage of a homemade pesto I get from a local market. They sell small containers and I always have it on hand, but you can easily make your own. But honestly I like making crescent rolls and others breads using this method so I keep the pesto on hand for quick fixes. Also … pesto is great with some fresh deli meat and some cheese to make paninis. Just one of those things I keep on hand for last minute meals.

Well this bisque is very elegant way to start dinner for company or even for a party. A big crock pot some mugs and a side of the scallops skewers and pesto straws and everyone can help them selves.


  1. 1First make the bisque …In a large pot, saute the shallots and fennel in olive oil for a couple of minutes until soft. Then I add my diced potato to the microwave covered with saran wrap and cooked 1-2 minutes until very soft. Mash and then add to the fennel and shallots. Add the scallops the diced ones … and lightly sautee. Add the thyme, salt and pepper and bay leaf. Add the cream, milk and broth and cook on low.
  2. 2While the bisque cooks, make the bread sticks. I flatten out the bread sticks with my palm but you can use a rolling pin or whatever you have. Brush with some pesto and then sprinkle with parm. Then roll. I also spray with pam or my olive oil atomizer and roll in parm to make a nice crust. Then bake according to directions.
  3. 3No lets finish the bisque … Use your immersion blender or if you don’t have one scoop some of the scallops into a blender. You want some pureed and some still whole. I like a combination of both. I just blend for a few minutes. If you like your bisque thicker, use a slurry of cornstarch and water or instant potato flakes to thicken it. I don’t like mine too thick. Season with salt and pepper again if needed.
  4. 4Now finish the garnish. While the bread sticks finish baking and the soup thickens … Make the scallop garnish. Dip each large scallop in egg, then bread crumbs mixed with salt and pepper. Saute in butter until nice and golden brown. Skewer and serve 2 per skewer. This makes a great garnish for the soup. I use the short bamboo skewers.
  5. 5For each mug or bowl, I use one skewer of the sauted scallops, 1 pesto cheese straw and then top with a few fennel fronds and a little paprika. This is a very elegant and rich but very delicious appetizer or start to dinner.
  6. 6


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