East Coast Chowder

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Seafood chowder is one of the most iconic ways to fill your bowl with authentic, hearty goodness. This recipe perfectly represents the East-Coast ethos of tradition, simplicity and local pride. At heart, it’s really just a bowl of whatever could be found, prepared with old-fashioned cooking.

Ingredients
2 slices of bacon, chopped
1 large cooking onion, diced
2 celery stalks, diced
1 large carrot, diced
1/4 cup of white wine
2 lb of mussels in shells
1 cup of cream
2 cups of milk
10-ounce jar of bar clams in broth
2 tsp of salt freshly ground pepper
1 bay leaf
1 large potato, unpeeled and diced
1 lb or so of fresh, local seafood (whitefish, lobster, scallops, salmon, oysters or whatever you have)
1/4 cup (60 mL) of chopped flat leaf parsley

Brown the bacon until crisp in a thick-bottomed soup pot. Add the onions, celery and carrot and sauté until the colours and flavours brighten, about three to four minutes. Splash in the white wine and toss in the mussels. Bring to a simmer, cover tightly and steam until the mussels open and release juices (about five minutes). Fish out all the shells and discard. Fish out the meaty mussels and reserve. Pour in the cream, milk, bar clams, salt, pepper and bay leaves. Bring to a steady simmer then toss in the potatoes. Continue simmering until the potatoes are tender and tasty, (about 15 minutes). Stir in your choice of fish and the reserved mussel meat. Return to simmer. At the last second, stir in the parsley. Serve immediately with your favourite biscuits.

Kitchen Tip Sometimes you’ll find your broth seems to separate. No harm done, it’s perfectly natural and easily fixed by simply stirring the works until smooth again.

Recipe courtesy of chef Michael Smith, The Inn at Bay Fortune, P.E.I.