I love to make fish chowder as soon as the weather turns cold. I usually get two firm-fleshed fillets plus a smoked fish (kipper, smoked haddock, etc. – skinned & boned). I use what I have in the house – because we can’t find clam juice here in France, I usually add a half a bullion cube just to give the broth some extra flavor, but you can leave it out. You can also use evaporated milk and broth instead of milk. What counts is having good quality fish!
Onion, new potatoes, milk, 1/2 cube chicken bullion or 1 cup clam juice (optional), bay leaves, salmon, cod, smoked haddock, sweetcorn (canned, frozen, or fresh cut off the cob), spring onions, parsley or dill.
Peel and roughly chop an onion, put it into a large deep pan with a little butter and fry till golden. Scrub 400g potatoes, then halve or quarter them depending on their size. Add them to the onion then pour in 500ml of water and 500ml of milk. Bring to the boil, with a coarse grinding of pepper and a couple of bay leaves.
Lower the heat so the liquid simmers and, when the potato is soft, introduce 400g of mixed fish, such as salmon, cod and smoked haddock, cut into large cubes, and continue to cook on a low heat for 10 minutes.
Add the corn to the pan. Roughly chop 2 spring onions and a small bunch of parsley (or dill) and stir them into the soup carefully, without breaking up the fish. Serve as soon as the corn is tender. It is important not to stir the chowder too much as it cooks, which would result in the fish breaking up.
The flavors will improve if the soup rests 30 minutes before serving.
Serve with crusty bread or oyster crackers, a green salad, and a crisp white wine or cider.