Original article published at TasteAtlas.
This thick, creamy, and rich puréed soup traditionally includes ingredients such as cream, seafood, cognac or wine, and a combination of spices. The origin of its name is still debated – some claim that the word refers to a soup that is cooked twice (bis cuits), since the traditional way of making the soup involves first roasting the shellfish and then simmering them again in the flavorful broth.
Another theory suggests it is related to the Bay of Biscay, whose cuisine typically uses spicy ingredients similar to those used in bisque. Bisque was first mentioned as a shellfish soup in the 17th century, leading food historians to suggest that it was originally a fisherman’s dish that was designed to get the most flavor out of whatever ingredients were available.
Today, the most popular version of the dish is lobster bisque, which is made using a long cooking process designed to make the dish as flavorful as possible.