Saturday, December 13, 2008

Scallop Chowder

Scallops were on sale this week, so I picked a nice wintery recipe that uses them. I originally wanted to put this in bread bowls but we couldn't find any good loaves to use. Oh well.

I eliminated the Pernod and the aniseed and everything licorice-related because that does not sound yummy to me at all. I'd read in reviews that it was a little bit strong, too, so I think I made a good decision. I also read in the reviews that people have substituted a can of chopped clams for the scallops and it worked well for them. If we make this again, that is probably what we will do. It is a delicious chowder base and does not taste light at all. It was yummy with the scallops, but the scallops got boring really quickly because the chunks are so big and there are just so many of them in the soup. I think we'd like it more with clams. And maybe a bread bowl.


Scallop Chowder
Cooking Light, March 2007

We liked the flavor of the clam juice in this soup, but you could substitute fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth. If you don't have Pernod on hand, or prefer to omit the alcohol, substitute one teaspoon anise extract or finely ground aniseed. Serve with crackers.

2 teaspoons butter
Cooking spray
1 1/2 cups chopped onion (about 1 medium)
1/4 cup chopped celery
1 teaspoon minced garlic
4 1/2 cups (1/2-inch) cubed peeled Yukon gold or red potato (about 1 1/2 pounds)
1 1/4 teaspoons kosher salt, divided
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, divided
1/4 cup all-purpose flour (about 1 ounce)
2 1/2 cups clam juice
2 1/2 cups 2% reduced-fat milk
1 tablespoon Pernod (licorice-flavored liqueur)
1 1/2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme
1 1/2 pounds sea scallops, cut into 1-inch chunks
1 1/2 cups half-and-half
1/4 cup chopped fresh chives

Melt 2 teaspoons butter in a Dutch oven coated with cooking spray over medium-high heat. Add chopped onion and celery; sauté for 5 minutes or until tender. Add 1 teaspoon garlic, and sauté for 1 minute. Add potato, 1 teaspoon salt, and 3/4 teaspoon pepper; cook for 2 minutes. Lightly spoon flour into a dry measuring cup; level with a knife. Sprinkle flour over potato mixture, and cook for 1 minute, stirring frequently. Add clam juice and milk; bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 20 minutes or until potato is tender. Partially mash potato using a potato masher. Stir in remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt, remaining 1/4 teaspoon pepper, Pernod, and thyme; simmer 10 minutes. Add scallops and half-and-half; cook 5 minutes or until scallops are done. Sprinkle with chives.

Yield: 8 servings

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