Friday, October 22, 2010

Weekend Cooking: Fish Chowder

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It feels like I am cooking my way through Stephanie O'Dea's wonderful cookbook, Make It Fast, Cook It Slow: The Big Book of Everyday Slow Cooking.  It has become one of my go-to cookbooks for whenever I'm using the crockpot, which happens at least twice a week around here.  

It's taken awhile, but I've become a convert to the concept of meal-planning.  It is amazing how much smoother and less stress-filled cooking has become as a result ... but that's another post.  This particular Fish Chowder was on the docket for one of our weeknights, and Wednesday was the perfect gray and drizzly day to have this simmering in the crockpot.

Plus I had all the ingredients on hand, so that was even better. 

(You see that Squeeze Garlic in the middle there?  I could kiss the person who came up with this. That, my friends, is the best idea ever.  I'm not much of a fan of chopping and mincing garlic.  This is the same stuff that comes in the jars, but only in tube form.  Maybe this has been around forever, but I just noticed it at the farmer's market last week.) 

Anyway ... the ingredients for the Fish Chowder.

8-10 baby potatoes, diced
1 cup frozen roasted corn (I used a bag of regular ol' yellow frozen corn)
1/2 white onion, chopped
1 handful baby carrots, chopped (didn't have)
3 celery stalks, chopped (hate celery, so none appeared in my chowder)
3 cups chicken broth (I used vegetable broth)
3-4 garlic cloves, chopped (as I was saying about the Squeeze Garlic ....)
1/2 tsp black pepper
1/4 tsp. Old Bay seasoning (they were giving out packets at the Yankees-Orioles game we attended in September at Camden Yards, so I added it)
kosher salt
1 cup heavy whipping cream
1 pound white fish, cut into cubes (frozen OK) (I used tilapia)
2 cups frozen shelled fully cooked shrimp
parmesan to garnish (the book doesn't mention this, but the website does, and since my kids will try anything if it is coated with parmesan, I added it)

Use a 4 quart slow cooker. Put the vegetables into your stoneware. Cube fish, and add - it's okay if it's still frozen. Plop everything else on top except the cream and shrimp.  Cover and cook on low for 8 hours, high for 4 hours, or until the potatoes are tender.  Stir in the heavy cream and shrimp 20 minutes before serving, and turn the slow cooker to high.

My notes:  We liked this one enough, but I would make some changes next time.  I didn't have enough fish or shrimp on hand, and in hindsight, I should have halved this recipe.  But I didn't think about that until I was in the middle of chopping potatoes and adding corn and garlic and Old Bay to the crockpot and that's when I realized that I needed more fish.  I also think a thicker fish would have been better, or maybe the addition of scallops. 

I served this with ciabatta bread and salad. We had extra chowder, so I used it as a sauce for the following night's dinner and served it over pasta shells. 

copyright 2010, Melissa (Betty and Boo's Mommy, The Betty and Boo Chronicles) If you are reading this on a blog or website other than The Betty and Boo Chronicles or via a feedreader, this content has been stolen and used without permission.


Beth F said...

This sounds easy and I can see making a few changes. I think my husband would like a bit of hot sauce or some hot pepper flakes. The addition of scallops would be nice too.

Anonymous said...

I just borrowed Make It Fast, Cook It Slow from the library and am planning to try my first dish from it tomorrow! It seems like a really good cookbook. Chances are good I'm going to have to get my own copy!

Peaceful Reader said...

This sounds perfect for a gray day although I would have to leave the shrimp out as my husband is allergic to shellfish. I like Beth's idea of adding a little hot pepper or hot sauce to the mix.

JoAnn said...

This sounds like another winner... just added the cookbook to my library list!

bermudaonion said...

I like that you cooked it in the crockpot - I might try it with modifications.

Peppermint Ph.D. said...

I need to check this one out as well...crockpot recipes are lifesavers during the week!

Meg said...

Mmm, I love fish -- and fish chowder sounds like something I would really enjoy! Meal planning seems so great... I just need to get better about actually doing it.