Tuesday, April 10, 2012
Very Simple Salmon Chowder
My in-laws were from Michigan's Upper Peninsula, their parents having migrated there during the very early 1900s from Finland. One popular dish was a soup made with potatoes, milk and salt cod. I remember my mother-in-law making this during the 1960s when Tom and I were dating and Tom telling me how much he didn't like it.(I did!) Anyway, over the years Tom learned to really like fish chowders and I often make this one with salmon. Called "lohikeitto" in Finnish, it often will have carrots and rutabaga. I like it simple with potatoes, leeks and a lot of fresh dill. Serve it with a sturdy rye bread.
Makes 3 to 4 quarts
6 Tbl butter, divided
2 large fat leeks, white and light green part only
4 cups peeled potatoes cut into a 3/4 inch dice (I used 3 large redskins)
3 Tbl flour
4 cups clam juice or fish stock
2 cups half and half
1 1/2 to 2 pounds boneless, skinless salmon cut into one inch cubes
1 cup fresh minced dill
Salt and white pepper to taste
Cut the leeks lengthwise into four quarters each and then crosswise into 1/4 inch pieces
Melt 3 Tbl of the butter in a good size soup pot and gently saute the leeks over medium heat until soft. Stir in the potato and flour and continue to saute to let the flour cook a little for about a minute.
Add the fish stock or clam juice, bring up to a boil and then simmer the potatoes for about ten minutes until fork tender.
Add the half and half and the fish. Bring barely up to a simmer (don't boil!) for about 5 minutes. Stir in the remaining 3 Tbl butter and the minced dill. Season with salt and white pepper.