I’ve been making this chowder for many many years. In my opinion, Redfish is best for chowders. It is so firm (often have to cut with a steak knife) it holds up to cooking without falling apart in the soup. But the other fish varieties indicated below will also work nicely in this chowder. I often have to use whatever fish I can get here in Central Texas, since I no longer live on Galveston Island, where Redfish is readily available at seafood sellers. The flavor balance of the fish, wine and dill in this recipe is quite delicate, so this is one fish chowder I would NOT recommend you recipe tweakers add other shellfish to. :) The one time I added shrimp or clams, this just wasn’t as good. Dill just doesn’t seem to compliment shellfish quite like it does whole fish. My original recipe called for 2 c. diced potato, not allowed on a low-carb regimen. But I often substitute diced radishes, parsnip or rutabagas in this soup. If you’re up to the starchy veggie rung of the OWL carb ladder, I’d lean toward the rutabaga myself. This chowder is quite good without any “potato” sub at all.
Added note: I regularly make seafood stock from all my shrimp/lobster shells (simmered 30 min. in water) and keep frozen at all times in 1 & 2 cup jars. Makes a recipe like this easy to put together.
A nice variation on this recipe is to use a little coconut milk for some of the cream. I find the bacon simmering in this adds enough saltiness for us, but by all means, add more if you feel it needs it. :) Induction friendly recipe if wine is omitted.
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6 slices bacon, coarsely chopped
3 oz. onion, chopped
¼ c. parsley, chopped
¼ tsp. dill seed
2 sprigs fresh dill
2 qts. seafood stock
1 c. heavy cream
2 lb. mild fish filets (Redfish if available, otherwise, any boneless fish filets will do), cut into 1″ chunks
½ c. dry white wine (omit if on Induction phase)
1/8 tsp. cayenne pepper
¼ tsp. black pepper
DIRECTIONS: On high heat, brown bacon in large stew pot until just done, not crisp. Add onion and saute until onion begins to brown and caramelize. If including, add diced rutabaga or parsnip at this point and saute until pretty tender. Add all remaining ingredients except fish and cream. Allow to return to a boil and then lower heat. Simmer 30 minutes or so. Shortly before serving, add cream and fish chunks. Continue simmering on lowest heat just long enough for fish to get done. Any longer and the flesh will fall apart on you. Thicken with your favorite thickener if desired. Garnished with a sprig of parsley.
NUTRITIONAL INFO: Makes 8 large bowls, each containing:
9.86 g fat
3.25 g carbs, .66 g fiber, 2.59 NET CARBS
22.4 g protein
993 mg sodium (can be reduced with less bacon)