From Iceland — Soup Tuesday: Rækjusúpa, Icelandic Shrimp Soup

Soup Tuesday: Rækjusúpa, Icelandic Shrimp Soup

Published November 10, 2015

Soup Tuesday: Rækjusúpa, Icelandic Shrimp Soup
York Underwood
Photo by
York Underwood

As Soup Tuesday has gotten more popular, so have the demands of our weekly visitors. Each week I worry about a soup not being able to keep up to the newly acquired standards of The Crouton Crew (fans of Soup Tuesday). There are many vegetarians in our office, and some people don’t like bacon (what?). Lóa, from FM Belfast, called this No Poet Soup–referring to the fact it had meat in it. To avoid making the mistake I made with this soup, you can replace bacon with dulse (Icelandic Seaweed). If you love bacon, then use it. It’s delicious.

Rækjusúpa manages to be filling without being heavy. Rækja is very popular in Denmark, but chilis and corn are definitely more American. Rækjasúpa sits in the middle, like the continental divide. Iceland is located where the North American and European tectonic plates meet. Some people go scuba diving in freezing water to touch both tectonic plates simultaneously, while underwater. I contemplate this phenomenon through the medium of soup.

This soup also strikes a balance between smokey and sweet, perfect for Reykjavík. This soup is best eaten while reading, watching TV or crying alone in the dark.

Rækjusúpa: Icelandic Shrimp Soup

Preparation time: 20 minutes

Cooking time:  50 minutes


4     Ears of Corn

1     Large Leek

1     Kg Haddock

1     Kg frozen Shrimp

500g   Bacon

4   Stalks of Celery

500 ml of 18% Cream

3    Cloves Garlic

2    Handfuls fresh Parsley

1     Fresh Chilli

3    Tablespoons Butter, and enough Vegetable Bouillon to handle three litres of water.

Crusty Bread and fried Leek petals for garnish.


1. Melt three tablespoons of butter on medium heat in the pot. Slice the bacon into small strips and add to the pot.


2. Thinly slice the leek and add it to the pot.


3. Dice the celery and add it to the pot


4. With a sharp knife, remove the kernels from the cobs of corn. Add the kernels to the pot.


5. Remove the seeds and dice the chilli. Peel and thinly chop the cloves of garlic. Add everything to the pot.


6. Cube the fish and add to the pot. Open the bag of frozen shrimp and add to the pot.



7. Add about 2 litres of water, the vegetable bouillon and boil the pot for about 30 minutes. Add the cream. Season well with salt and pepper. Get ready to rock out with this hangover-killing soup. While the soup is simmering, fry some of the stiffer leek petals and one thumb long piece of leek stalk. Pour the oil over the leek with a spoon and drizzle on some vinegar to soften it. This can be used as a garnish when the soup is ready.

Leek Seared

8. Serve into a nice bowl and with hearty bread. Sprinkle on flash pickled leek and serve with a fried leek petal. This soup is almost too good, enjoy!


Shrimp Soup

Remember to share this recipe with your friends and loved ones.

Also, send us your recipes. Let’s get through this winter together.

One Soup Tuesday at a time.

WTF is a Soup Tuesday?

As the sun yet again makes her draining descent towards winter solstice, it has become clear: fall has arrived. The darkness in store will likely bring a lot of you down, but don’t fret or give up—there are a number of methods for fighting off the winter blues: Reading, lýsi, sex, drugs, alcohol, and—of course—soup. Now, doing most of those things would be mostly inappropriate, if not illegal, at the Reykjavík Grapevine’s offices (if it were one of those “appropriate” offices)—except for maybe the lýsi and reading. And of course, the soup.

Lýsi is kinda disgusting and reading is for nerds, so to combat the coming full-scale attack of the SADs, we decided to started a new tradition to help us make it through the coming winter: SOUP TUESDAYS. Yes! Soup Tuesdays! Every Tuesday, we’ll be making a different soup in our shitty little office, document the process and then show you how to make one for yourself.

You can also send us your best recipes (on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or email), with a photo, so we can share soup knowledge throughout the world. Together we can make it through the bad weather.

Solace and Solidarity in Soup.

Happy Soup Tuesday.


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