I modified this recipe from one on Epicurious.com. As usual the recipe from Epi included a lot of what I consider to be unnecessary steps to make the recipe sound more fancy and discourage people from actually cooking and it also had less variety in the ingredients. I like a variety of colors and textures in my soup so I added the clam and the corn, which I thought would never be bad in a chowder.
I used frozen/canned goods because I live in Illinois where fresh fish is hard to come by and because this way I can make this soup any time since most of the ingredients are staples in my pantry anyway, but of course it would taste a lot better with fresh ingredients so feel free to substitute.
4 slices of bacon
1 medium onion
1 lb of potatoes
2 bay leaves
2 teaspoons of dried thyme
2 cups of fish stock or chicken broth
1 can of small neck clams
1 package of frozen cod fillets ( approx 1 lb)
1.5 cups of frozen corn kernels
1 cup of heavy cream
1/4 cup of chopped parsley
- Cut the bacon slices into little strips
- Wash, peel and finely dice the potatoes ( the dices should be about 0.5 inch small)
- Make sure the cod is thawed or immerse the plastic bag in room temperature water to thaw more quickly
- Get the corn kernels out of the freezer to thaw. You can also put them in a small colander and rinse them with room temperature water to thaw more quickly
- Finely dice the onion
- In a large stockpot cook the bacon so that it renders the fat. Once it is starting to brown remove the bacon bits from the pot with a slotted spoon and place them in a plate with paper towels. Reserve them for later.
- Cook the onion in the bacon fat for a few minutes, until it is soft and translucent but not browned.
- Add the potatoes, the thyme, the bay leaves and mix well to coat the potatoes with the fat.
- Add the fish stock/chicken broth as well as the water from the can of clams ( make sure the liquid is enough to just about cover the potatoes, if it isn't enough add more stock or some water).
- Bring the pot to a boil and cook for about 10 minutes until the potatoes are soft but not mushy.
- You can choose to leave the cod fillets whole or chop them before hand. I like chopping them because I like everything to be bite sized, but some people like to leave them whole and then fish them out and cover them with soup, it's up to you.
- Add the cod, the clams and the corn to the soup. Cook for about 5 minutes if you cut the cod in chunks, a little longer if you put the whole fillet but not longer than 10 minutes, to avoid overcooking the fish.
- Add the cream and let get back to a boil for a couple of minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste
( remember you are going to put those bacon bits on top of the soup so don't overdo it!)
- Serve with the bacon bits and the chopped parsley on top. If you can let the soup rest for 15 minutes before serving it, even better.