Lest the thoughts of school lunch deter you from trying this recipe, let me assure you, your school lunch lady never made anything like this. The following soup is delicious, and fast and easy. Give it a try. You'll like it. (Even though it lacks all the fabulous cooking photography that seems to be the MO on blogs.)
1 Tblsp sesame oil
1 lb medium fresh shrimp, peeled (or thawed, frozen precooked and peeled shrimp is ok)
1 Tblsp fresh grated ginger
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 red bell pepper, finely diced
1-2 tsp Thai green curry paste (red Asian chili sauce may be substituted)
5-6 c low-sodium chicken broth
1 (13.5 oz) can coconut milk
3 Tblsp fish sauce (optional)
2-3 Tblsp fresh lime juice
1 Tblsp brown sugar
2 green onions, cut into ½" pices (about 1/4 c) optional
Heat oil in large pot over medium-high heat. Add shrimp; stir-fry 2-3 minutes or just until shrimp turn pink. Transfer shrimp to a plate. Add ginger, garlic, and bell pepper to pot, and saute 1-2 minutes or until tender. Stir in curry paste, broth, coconut milk, and, if desired, fish sauce. Add lime juice and brown sugar, and bring to a boil; reduce heat, and let simmer 5 minutes. Stir in shrimp. Garnish, if desired.
Yes, there are a few unusual ingredients, but they are worth the nominal investment, because you will want to make this soup over and over. If the idea of fish sauce is more than you can take, leave it out. If you can hack it, try it. Don't be turned off by the idea (or even the smell). It adds a nice subtle nuance to the soup, and is not at all offensive when actually in the soup. DO NOT TRY FISH SAUCE STRAIGHT FROM THE BOTTLE. If you do, you'll get what you deserve. There. I've warned you, and that's all I can do.
As the Swedish Chef might say "Gluten Gleeben Gloten Globen."