First, if you’ve never tried fish stews or chowders and you’re not sure it’s your cup of tea – please be sure to try this recipe for Salmon Chowder with Potatoes, Corn and Bacon!
It will convince you, at the very first bite, that you’ve been missing out on something incredibly wonderful. Some people are turned off at the thought of fish chowders, but there’s a reason this hearty, rich soup is a favorite among those lucky enough to live near the coast and have fresh fish available in abundance. In addition to being super easy to make, this chowder is, without a doubt, one of the best things I’ve cooked in my dutch oven … period.
While in Portlaoise Ireland, my husband ate a bowl of fish chowder and at the time, said it was the best he’s ever eaten. He travels more than I do and is very brave when it comes to trying new dishes on the menu. When he tried this Salmon Chowder and said it was as good and maybe even better than the Irish chowder, I knew that was extremely high praise.
Soft chunks of buttery potatoes, smokey bacon, sweet corn and tender bite sized pieces of flavorful salmon all wrapped up in a flavorful, rich and creamy broth – talk about delicious comfort food! Good salmon is my favorite mild, un-fishy fish, so it’s perfect for this chowder. The texture of the salmon holds together beautifully by cooking it at the very end. When serving be sure to give it a good squeeze of fresh lemon juice. The lemon really seals the deal for this rich Salmon Chowder. It’s also a very filling dish, but no worries because the leftovers are still amazing the next day.
Don’t forget to PIN to your favorite soup board!
- 1 pound yukon gold potatoes, peeled and cut into ½-inch cubes
- 8 ounces sliced bacon, cut in half (I used nitrate-free Applewood Smoked Bacon)
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
- ½ small onion, diced
- 6 scallions (chopped - both white and green parts)
- 2 cups fresh or frozen corn
- 1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves
- ⅛ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
- 3 medium cloves of garlic, minced
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 (8-ounce) bottle clam juice
- 3 cups half and half (plus ½ cup addition milk if needed)
- 1½ pounds salmon fillets (wild caught) skin removed and cut into 1-inch pieces
- ½ teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
- ¼ teaspoon lemon zest
- Lemon wedges and fresh chopped fresh chives for serving
- Bring a 3 quarts of water to a rolling bowl in a heavy bottom sauce pan. Salt the water and add the potatoes. Cook just until almost tender, about 10 minutes. Drain well in a colander and set aside.
- Cook the bacon until crisp in a 5-quart heavy bottom pot or dutch oven over medium heat. Remove the cooked bacon to a paper towel lined plate. Cut or break the bacon into ½-inch pieces and set aside.
- Remove all of 2 tablespoons bacon fat from the pan. Add the butter and cook the onions, scallions, corn, thyme and red-pepper in the dutch oven until the onions are tender, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and bay leaf and sauté for about 1 minute or until garlic becomes fragrant. Add the clam juice and deglaze the pan, scraping up any pieces struck to the bottom of the pan.
- Add the half and half to the onion mixture and bring just to a boil over medium heat. Add the potatoes, ⅔ of the chopped bacon (reserve ⅓ for serving), and the salt and pepper. Reduce the heat to medium low and cook the potatoes for about 10 minutes.
- Salt the salmon pieces and add to the chowder along with the lemon zest. Occasionally stir gently and cook gently just until the salmon is cooked through, about 5 to 8 minutes.
- Discard the bay leaf and serve the chowder topped with chopped chives and the remaining bacon pieces. Garnish with fresh ground black pepper and a good squeeze of lemon juice. Serve with crusty bread for a complete and hearty meal.
Don't forget to serve each bowl with a good squeeze of fresh lemon juice. It really makes this soup come alive with a fresh, bright taste.
Here are a few more chowder recipes you might like:
- Creamy Chicken Corn Chowder ~ from Seasons & Suppers
- Springtime Salmon and Fennel Chowder ~ from The View from Great Island
- Creamy Cheesy Corn & Potato Chowder ~ from Saving Room for Dessert
- Easy Ham and Corn Chowder ~ from Simply Fresh Dinners
I love cooking soups and chowders in a good dutch oven like this 2-quart Le Creuset (photo is clickable)
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Finally, this past week we spent 5 glorious days in the Shenandoah National Park in Virginia camping at Loft Mountain. My husband’s sister-in-law Rita came up from Nashville to join us for part of the trip and we all had a wonderful time. We hiked on the Appalachian Trail which loops around part of Loft Mountain Campground, celebrated my husband’s birthday, ate wonderful campfire food, read books, laughed, played board games and enjoyed some crazy weather. It was 85 degrees on our first day, then the blustery wind came and the temperatures went down to the low 30’s the next night. Good thing we packed a variety of clothes and warm sleeping bags.
We had a steady mountain-top wind at about 25 miles per hour with gusts that were pretty wicked. What fun! I hope you got outside and enjoyed some of these beautiful fall days too!
I’m way behind on my blog visits so please forgive me for not commenting lately. We had to drive several miles for phone reception and had no internet connection while camping in the mountains. And honestly it was nice to escape from the electronic world for a few days. But I’m glad to be home and so happy you took the time to visit. Be sure to try this delicious recipe and thanks so much for stopping by!