Friday, January 22, 2010

Salmon Chowder

What would you say if I told you I made chowder just because I had already purchased oyster crackers? Because yeah, I made chowder because Trader Joe’s was selling boxes of oyster crackers. This chowder, though, is quite worthy of all those crackers. The original recipe is here and it has been modified quite a bit. I do like the note in it that says preferably wild on the salmon filet. I’m from Alaska. Aaron’s from Alaska. We only eat wild salmon in this house. Whenever we go out, we check if the salmon on the menu is wild. If not, we don’t eat it. I even make sure my friends ask (if they’re not from AK. If they are, they already do).

Anyway, not the point. Salmon is delicious and wonderful though and sockeye has always been my favorite. I just love the color and the taste. Plus, it makes for amazing lox. And apparently chowder too.

Salmon Chowder modified from Gourmet via

Makes 6 servings

About 1 lb. red potatoes
6 oz. sliced bacon (we used about 2 oz. regular thick cut bacon and the rest turkey bacon)
2-3 Tb. butter
1 bunch scallions
¼ sweet onion
6 cloves garlic (they said 3. Ha!)
1 c. frozen corn
Dash of thyme
1 bay leaf
Few dashes of crushed red pepper
3 c. whole milk
2/3 c. heavy cream
1 lb. sockeye salmon filet (always wild. Always), skin discarded and fish cut into 1” pieces
Kosher salt and ground pepper to taste

Accidentally dice up ¾ lb of red potatoes. Cut remaining potatoes into ½” cubes. Boil water in pot and add potatoes, cooking until the large pieces are tender. Drain in colander and set aside.

Add scallions, onion and garlic into a food processor and pulse until diced (about 5-6 pulses).

Cook bacon in heavy pot over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until crisp, about 8 minutes. Transfer with a slotted spoon to paper towels to drain. If you use mostly turkey bacon, add in butter with the bacon fat, otherwise there won’t be enough fat to cook with. Cook scallions, corn, garlic, thyme, bay leaf, and red-pepper flakes in fat in pot over moderately low heat, stirring occasionally, until scallions are tender, about 5 minutes. Add milk and cream and bring just to a boil. Reduce heat to moderately low, then add potatoes, salmon, bacon, salt, and pepper and cook, gently stirring occasionally, until salmon is just cooked through and begins to break up as you stir, 5 to 8 minutes.

At this point, Aaron and I realized that the chowder, while smelling and tasting delicious, wasn’t really thick enough to call chowder. So I threw together a roux and we mixed that in and it thickened right up. So delicious. Discard bay leaf before serving.

Ladle into individual bowls and cover with an insane number of oyster crackers.

This chowder (or should I say chowda?) was so delicious, I can’t believe I ever stopped eating it. It’s got just the right amount of salt, salmon, potato. It is perfect in every way. Next time, it’s going in a bread bowl!


Renai said...

Chowder is one of those things that I LOVE so much but have never made myself. You are my inspiration! *Cue cheesy music*

Becca said...

Aww, you are so inspiring to me too! I've done chowder before, but never this thick. And thick is where it's at!

To try this! You have so much access to delicious seafood, you could make such a bomb chowder!

inaffets said...

god that looks so amazing. please come to my house and cook it for me.

Brittany said...

Damn straight us Alaskans know what's up with real salmon! Friends don't let friends eat farmed salmon...

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