Tahini gives this lobster and shrimp soup from Taste of Beirut its unusual color and flavor. As Joumana says, if you don't like tahini (sesame paste), this soup isn't for you! The flavor is kicked up with wonderful spices -- saffron, paprika, cardamom -- and brightened with fresh orange or lemon juice. With lobster and shrimp, this is a special-occasion soup for many of us, but one that will surely impress your guests.
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Thai curry pastes, especially the red and green ones, get a workout in my kitchen. This shrimp coconut curry noodle soup
, from Amee's Savory Dish, uses yellow curry paste, which you can find in any good Asian market, or do what Amee did and buy some from your favorite Thai restaurant. I love shrimp and noodle soups, especially with the chewy udon noodles in this recipe. If you have scallops or mussels instead of shrimp, go ahead and substitute -- or use a mixture of shellfish. And if you don't have udon noodles, try linguine. The curry and coconut base is so good you'll want to drink it with a straw.
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This sausage, cabbage and barley soup
, from Thyme for Cooking, could have sprung fully formed from my own pantry, and from yours, too. With the exception of the cabbage, all of the ingredients are things you keep on hand. Follow Katie's lead and be fearless when combining things you find in your refrigerator. Add fresh vegetables, if you have them, and lots of herbs and spices. Toss in some grains, too, and voila! I'm trying to include more cabbage (oh so healthy) in my diet, and delicious soups like this make it easy.
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