fish chowder
Image by Oliver Parini

From The Vermont Non-GMO Cookbook by Tracey Medeiros

The sweet, crisp flavors of the hard apple cider provide the perfect counterpoint to the smoky flavor of the lake fish and smooth, velvety texture from the cream and fish stock.

Serves 6


1/4 pound thick-cut bacon, diced into small pieces
1 ounce butter
1/2 pound carrots, peeled, trimmed and diced into medium pieces
1/2 pound leeks, cleaned, trimmed, and thinly sliced
1/2 pound celery root, peeled, trimmed and diced into medium pieces
1 tablespoon chopped garlic
1 tablespoon fresh assorted herbs, such as parley, tarragon, thyme, sage, or rosemary, minced, plus extra for garnish
1/2 cup hard apple cider
1 1/2 quarts fish stock, warmed
1/2 pound potatoes, such as Yukon Gold, peeled and cut into 1⁄2-inch pieces
1 cup organic heavy cream, warmed
1 1/4 pounds applewood smoked lake fish, such as walleye, or trout, pin bones removed and cut into 2-inch pieces
1 1/4 cups fresh or frozen corn kernels
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
Baby red sorrel, for garnish, optional



In a large, heavy-bottom stockpot, cook the bacon over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until crisp, about 8 minutes. Remove the bacon from the pot with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towels, reserving the drippings in the pot.

Melt the butter in the same stockpot with the reserved bacon drippings over medium heat. Add the carrots, leeks, and celery root. Cook, stirring often, until the leeks are very tender, about
8 minutes. Add the garlic and herbs and cook, stirring often, until fragrant, about 1 minute.

Increase the heat to medium-high and add the hard apple cider. Cook until reduced by half, stirring frequently, about 3 minutes.

Add the stock and potatoes and reduce the heat to a simmer. Cook until the potatoes are fork tender, about 15 minutes.

Slowly add the warm cream, fish, and corn. Simmer until the fish is heated through and the corn is tender, about 10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Garnish with reserved bacon, herbs, and baby red Swiss chard, if desired.



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