Recipe Finder: Fish chowder starts off right with bacon

March 17, 2010|By Julie Rothman | Special to The Baltimore Sun

Peggy Everett of Salisbury was looking for a recipe that ran a few years ago in The Baltimore Sun for fish chowder made with a firm white fish and fresh crab meat. Faith Hermann of Relay thought she might have the recipe to which Everett was referring. She said the recipe for Rockfish and Crab Chowder that ran in the Sun in 2006 came from Brendan Keegan Jr., executive sous-chef at O'Leary's Seafood restaurant in Annapolis.

She said "it is delicious, of course, because it starts with bacon."

The recipe calls for homemade fish stock but notes that chicken stock can be used. I decided to test the recipe using chicken stock because it's easier. Even with chicken stock, it was a stupendous soup chock-full of the tastes of the Chesapeake Bay.

Requests
Mary Cronkhite from Bend, Ore., is in search of a recipe for a bar cookie that is made using yellow cake mix. Her recollection is that the batter was very thick because the only liquid was honey. The cookies also contained chocolate chips.

If you are looking for a recipe or can answer a request, write to Julie Rothman, Recipe Finder, The Baltimore Sun, 501 N. Calvert St., Baltimore, MD 21278, or e-mail recipefinder@baltsun.com. Letters may be edited for clarity.

Rockfish and Crab Chowder
Makes: 8 servings

6 slices of applewood-smoked bacon, finely diced

4 tablespoons unsalted butter

1 cup Spanish or yellow onion, diced

1 cup celery, diced

2 cloves garlic, minced

salt and pepper to taste

4 tablespoons all-purpose flour

1 cup dry white wine

3 cups homemade fish stock (or chicken stock)

1 bay leaf

1 cup potato, diced

1 1/2 pounds rockfish fillet, cut into 1/2 -inch cubes

1 pound jumbo lump crabmeat, picked clean

2 cups half-and-half

Tabasco sauce

Parsley, finely chopped

Smithfield ham, julienne

In a large sauce pot, over medium heat, render bacon until tender. Add butter and gently sauté onions, celery and garlic until onions are translucent. Season with salt and pepper. Sprinkle with flour and stir, making sure you cook the flour to remove that raw flour taste. Add white wine and reduce by half. Add fish (or chicken) stock and bay leaf. Bring to a boil. At this point, the chowder should begin to thicken. Add the potatoes and cook until tender, about 10 minutes. Then add the rockfish. Once the fish is cooked through, add the crabmeat and half-and-half. Stir in a couple dashes of Tabasco sauce. Check seasoning and remove bay leaf. Garnish with chopped parsley and ham.

Nutrition information

Per serving: 392 calories, 18 grams fat, 9 grams saturated fat, 12 grams carbohydrates, 41 grams protein, 1 gram fiber, 148 milligrams cholesterol, 577 milligrams sodium

Note: Nutritional analyses in today's Taste section were conducted by registered dietitian Jodie Shields unless otherwise stated

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