This Caribbean Shrimp Soup is easy to make and delivers lots of flavor.

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Can’t afford a Caribbean cruise?

Then let your taste buds transport you to the tropics.

The Kansas City Star’s Caribbean Shrimp Soup is a zesty dish that will help you get bikini-ready without taking a vacation from flavor. The soup’s flavor and quick assembly come from using a combination of low-sodium vegetable juice with vegetable stock, plus plenty of minced ginger and jalapeño for heat.

Toss a few plump shrimp (low in calories, low in fat and a good source of iron, potassium and niacin) into the pot with red peppers and frozen corn kernels for color and good nutrition. Top the dish off with an exotic garnish of fresh, silky papaya, which is a very good source of vitamins A and C.

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Cooking tips: To peel tomatoes, slash the bottom of the tomato. Bring water to a boil in a saucepan. Place the tomato in the boiling water for 15 to 30 seconds, then immerse in ice water. The skin will peel off easily.

For a milder, family-friendly soup, you might use 1/2 jalapeño pepper.

Caribbean Shrimp Soup

Makes 6 servings

1/2 onion, chopped

1/2 sweet red pepper, chopped

1 carrot, chopped

1/2 to 1 jalapeño pepper, seeded and minced

1 tablespoon finely minced ginger

2 cloves garlic, minced

3 cups low-sodium tomato vegetable juice

2 cups vegetable stock

2/3 cup frozen corn

1 large tomato, peeled, seeded and chopped

1/2 teaspoon cumin

1/4 teaspoon pepper

1 pound fresh large shrimp, shelled and deveined

Juice of 1 lime

3/4 cup peeled, seeded and chopped papaya

1. Spray a Dutch oven with nonstick spray and heat pan over medium-high heat. Add onion, red pepper, carrot, jalapeño pepper, ginger and garlic. Cook, stirring frequently, until onion is tender, about 4 to 5 minutes.

2. Add juice, vegetable stock, corn, tomato, cumin and pepper. Cover and heat to boiling. Reduce heat and simmer 15 to 20 minutes.

3. Stir in shrimp and lime juice; cover and cook just until shrimp are done and turn pink, about 3 to 4 minutes.

4. Ladle into individual bowls; garnish each with about 2 tablespoons chopped papaya.

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