Photo by By Nate Steiner

On the coast of Maine we can get fresh seafood anytime we want it. This traditional chowder recipe is equally fabulous in the fall or winter, or on a foggy summer day. Our recipe calls for haddock, but any flaky white fish will work – or try something a little different like monkfish or halibut (see below for special instructions).

4 Tbsp Butter
1 Medium Onion, diced
¼ C Salt Pork or Bacon, chopped
4 C Fish Stock or Water
2 Medium Potatoes, cut into ¼” cubes
2½ -3 # Fresh Haddock filets
2 C Half & Half, Low-fat Milk or Fat-free Evaporated Milk
2 teasp Kosher Salt
¼ teasp White Pepper (Black Pepper is fine too)
¼ teasp Dried Dill or Tarragon – or other herb(s) of your choice
In a large stock pot over medium-low heat, melt the butter. Add the onion and salt pork and cook, stirring often, until onions are translucent, 6 to 8 minutes.

Lay the filets on top of the onions, then add the stock/water and the potatoes. Bring to a boil, then simmer for 10-15 minutes until the potatoes are fork tender.

If you like thick chowder, ladle about 1 C of the broth into a large measuring cup and add 2-3 tablespoons of flour. Whisk well until smooth, and pour back into the stock. Stir in and simmer an extra few minutes. Add the dairy or your choice, as well as the herbs and spices. Simmer for another 5-10 minutes until hot – do not boil!

Serve hot with fresh bread or oyster crackers.
(By the way, chowder is always better the second day!)

* You can substitute other seafood or other types of fish. For monkfish or halibut, cut the filets into ½” cubes as they do not flake like haddock. For shrimp, scallops or crab, add last with the dairy.