Wednesday, January 16, 2013

My Return to Ty's Kitchen! Shrimp, Scallop, and Leek Chowder




I'm back! After a far too long hiatus and a less than inspired year at Ty's Kitchen, I've returned to make the blog better than ever. New recipes, ideas and hopefully a lot more interaction with YOU, my readers! To kick off the year, I wanted to share a delicious and easy recipe for a seafood chowder that would be good any time of the year. I had frozen some scallops and shrimp from Cape May that I picked up a couple months back and was looking for a fun way to use them. I decided on making a scallop, shrimp and leek chowder that would remind me of summer in the cold months and also provide a rich and warming dish for a cold winter's night.



I'm always a fan of adding corn to any chowder to give some sweetness and thicken up the soup with the starch from the kernels, and when shopping for the dish, I found some decent looking ears, so the dish was off to a good start before I even hit the kitchen. To go along with the corn and the other chowder staples of potatoes, carrots, celery, and red pepper, I picked up some leeks to add a nice twist instead of just using onion.



Once I gathered all of the veggies needed for the soup, I picked up some seafood stock and headed home. I chopped the leek, carrot, pepper, celery and a little garlic and sauteed them in olive oil until translucent. I then added some flour and a little more oil to make a light roux for the base of the soup. I added the seafood stock, some bay leaves, the potatoes and the corn and let it simmer for about 30 minutes. I then added the chopped shrimp and scallops and about a half cup of half and half and simmered for another 10 minutes. I topped the soup with a little parsley and served. The result was a creamy, delicious seafood soup that was rich in flavor from the shrimp and scallops, while still having a brightness from the vegetables. A truly delicious soup that's good in any season.



Ingredients:
1/2 lb shrimp - peeled, deveined, and chopped
1/2 lb scallops - chopped
4 cups seafood stock
2 leeks - rinsed and chopped
2 carrots - chopped
2 celery stalks - chopped
2 garlic cloves - chopped
1 red pepper - chopped
3 medium red potatoes - diced
2 ears of corn - kernels cut from the cob (or frozen if no fresh corn is available)
2 tablespoons all purpose flour
1/2 cup half and half or cream
2 bay leaves
1/4 cup parsley - chopped
3 tablespoons olive oil
Salt and pepper

To Cook:

  1. Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a heavy bottom pot on medium and add leeks, carrot, celery, red pepper and garlic
  2. Cook until starting to become translucent, about 5-6 minutes, and add the other tablespoon of olive oil and flour
  3. Stir constantly, scraping flour from bottom of pan
  4. Add seafood stock and bay leaves and bring to a simmer
  5. Add potatoes and corn and cook for 20-30 minutes
  6. Add shellfish, half and half, and parsley and simmer for another 8-10 minutes until seafood is cooked through
  7. Serve with some crusty bread and enjoy!



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