Tuesday, April 26, 2011

New England Fish Chowder

Hey!  Want to buy some baked goods from some awesome bakers?  All for a great cause?  Go on over to Bloggers Bake for Hope and check out what is for sale.  Bake sale opens May 4th.  I am donating a batch of Lemon Poppy Seed Cookies, which are delicious and ship very well.  Check it out!

I was born to eat fish chowder.  I also was born in Iowa.  Not something I typically include on my resume.  I actually hate Iowa.  No I don't.  I don't hold pointless grudges.  Iowa is fine.  Nebraska is just better.  (Born in Iowa, Reborn and raised in Nebraska)

Anyways, there is no reason I should love a fish chowder as much as I do.  But I do.  And this gets better the longer it sits.  Leftovers were certainly better than the original.  I even slightly overcooked the fish and after it all sat and melded and moisturized, all was right again.  

Also, this is not a thick chowder.  Just the way I like it.  Nice and soupy.  

New England Fish Chowder

1 Tbsp olive oil
1 teaspoon butter
2 medium yellow onions, chopped (about 2 cups)
1/2 cup dry white wine (optional)
3 large Yukon Gold potatoes (about 1 1/4 pounds), peeled, cut into 3/4-inch cubes
2 cups clam juice
1 bay leaf
1 Tbsp fresh thyme, or 1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon Old Bay (optional, can use a little paprika and a dash of cayenne)
1 1/2 to 2 lbs cod, or other firm white fish, pin bones removed, fillets cut into 2-inch pieces
1 1/2 cups heavy cream
2 Tbsp chopped fresh parsley

Heat oil and butter in the bottom of a large pot (6-qt) on medium heat. Add the onions and cook until softened, about 5 minutes. Add the wine, if using, and turn up the heat, cook, uncovered until the wine reduces by half. (If not using wine, add 1/4 cup of water with the clam juice.)

Add the potatoes, clam juice, bay leaf, thyme, salt and pepper, and Old Bay spice. (The potatoes should be just barely covered with the liquid in the pot. If not, add water so that they are.) Lower the heat to medium and cook, covered, until the potatoes are almost done, about 10-15 minutes.

In a separate pot, heat the cream until steamy (not boiling).

Add the fish to the pot of potatoes and add the heated cream. Return to the stove. Cook on low heat, uncovered, until the fish is just cooked through, about 10 minutes. Keep your eye on the heat! If you are using straight heavy cream you should be more easily able to avoid curdling, even if the soup starts to boil. But if you are substituting light cream, half and half, or milk, the mixture will likely curdle if it gets near boiling point (one of the reasons I like using straight heavy cream). Keep the temperature so that it barely gets steamy, but not simmering. When the fish is just cooked through, remove from heat.

Mix in the parsley. The flavors will improve if the soup rests 30 minutes before serving.

Serve with crusty bread or oyster crackers.

(Servings: 6, Prep time: 10 min., Cook time: 80 min., Difficulty: Easy)

foodforscot Ratings:

Shanon (taste):  9/10
Scot (taste):  9/10
Effort:  2/5
Dishwashing Effort:  2/5


  1. i never realized you were born in Iowa. it's really weirding me out...

  2. its ok. officially younger sisters aren't required to know things like that. i think mom and dad are also embarrassed about it.

  3. There is DEFINITELY a reason to love fish chowder this much and that's because it's damn good! Yours looks like the perfect amount of creamy delicious. LOL about Iowa...I've never been there or to nebraska so I hold no grudges!

  4. I made it with corn today since I'm not a huge fish fan (still put in the clam juice though) and it is delicious!!!!!