Seafood Chowder

AS I TYPE I am eating seafood chowder I made earlier in the week, the recipe for which I promised (on Twitter) to post. There’s a story that goes along with it. I came to make the chowder because I had leftover fish from a care group meeting. I heard someone say they never make fish because they don’t know what to do with it. Like lots of people. Like me.

My fish repertoire is tiny. And I think any girl (or boy) who grew up as close to the Atlantic Ocean as I did ought to know how to make a piece of fish. But alas, but childhood exposure was mainly frozen fish sticks, every Friday. Religiously.

I decided the following week, since we’d be meeting at my house, to bake the simplest fish, unbreaded and only lightly seasoned, and serve it with lemon slices. Nobody was forced to eat it – there were plenty of other things there – but it went over well. I baked an extra two tilapia, just in case of I don’t know what, and that’s exactly how many were left over. So I went hunting for a seafood soup and adapted it to my purposes.

Into a deep pot over medium heat, put:

1 tablespoon vegetable oil or extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons butter (I always cook with unsalted)


2 all-purpose potatoes, peeled and diced
2 ribs celery, chopped
1 medium yellow onion, chopped
1 small red bell pepper, seeded and diced
1 bay leaf, fresh or dried

Season with:

Freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon Old Bay seasoning blend

Saute 5 minutes.
Sprinkle in:

3 tablespoons all-purpose flour

Cook, stirring, 2 minutes.
Stir in:

2 cups vegetable or chicken stock or broth

Stir in:

1 quart whole milk (I used 2%)

Bring just to a slight bubble.
Stir in:

3 cups corn kernels, either scraped fresh from the cob or frozen (I used the last of the corn I put up last September.)
8 ounces cooked lump crab meat (I also tossed in the leftover tilapia, broken into chunks)

Simmer 5 minutes.
Taste test. You can add a dash of hot cayenne pepper sauce, if you like (I did not.).
Remove bay leaf. Serve in bread bowls or in soup bowls. Top with sliced scallions and oyster crackers.

Adapted from Rachael Ray’s “Corn and Crab Chowder.”
Basically, the recipe is Rachael Ray’s. The story is mine.

About Marilyn

Reading, thinking, listening, writing and talking about faith, creativity, ESL for refugees, grief and finding the story in a story. Student of Spanish. Foe of procrastination. Cheez-it fan. People person with hermit tendencies or vice-versa. Thank you so much for reading.
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5 Responses to Seafood Chowder

  1. laura says:

    This sounds absolutely lovely, Marilyn. May we have some next time I come calling? Just teasing, I still owe you lunch! But I am so curious about this “care group”. Sounds wonderful.

    How are you doing, my friend? Thank you for your prayers this week. It has been terribly hard…maybe more so for the parents. So grateful for this praying community.


  2. bethhavey says:

    This looks fantastic, Marilyn. Thanks for all these great recipes. Beth


  3. Belinda says:

    Does anyone else get almost physical satisfaction from reading a recipe such as this? I feel warm and full in my tummy, and I haven’t yet had supper! 🙂


  4. Charlotte says:

    M-m-m-m Chowder. I try to add a slice or two of cooked bacon to the pot, Just before the potatoes. This time of year, awesome. Sounds like you folks are eating well out in Ohio!


  5. Christina Craven says:

    I’ve been making a great tilipia scampi dish. It’s delicious and easy. I will have to send you the recipe.


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