Easy dinner recipes: Rich seafood chowders in an hour or less

Easy dinner recipes: Rich seafood chowders in an hour or less
The clam chowder at La Conner Brewing Co. in Washington state's San Juan Islands has a bit of spice to it. Read the recipe » (Bob Chamberlin / Los Angeles Times)

Even if the weather feels more like summer than traditional fall here in Southern California, you can still get in the seasonal mood with a comforting bowl of chowder. We have three great variations that come together in an hour or less.

La Conner Brewing Co.'s clam chowder: It's a classic clam chowder — creamy and rich, with a nice balance of clams and potatoes — straight from Washington state.


Andalusian seafood chowder: Take the seafood chowder from cookbook author Janet Mendel. The recipe is for a rich Andalusian variation — gazpachuelo con pescado — which, Mendel wrote, has "obvious roots in gazpacho, [and] is thickened with an olive oil and egg emulsion. The simple version contains bits of fish and potatoes, but more elaborate versions ... contain chunks of fish, shrimp, ham, potatoes and peas." The dish takes less than an hour to make.

Durty Nelly's seafood chowder: Durty Nelly's was happy to share its recipe for rich and creamy seafood chowder, thick with big chunks of firm white fish, shrimp and scallops, straight from Nova Scotia. You can find the recipe below.


Total time: 45 minutes | Makes 10 1/2 cups

    2 large boiling potatoes, diced
    1 1/2 cups diced onion
    1 1/2 cups diced carrot
    1 1/2 cups diced celery
    1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons butter, divided
    1 quart water
    1 1/2 tablespoons fish base, preferably Minor's
    1 cup whipping cream
    1/4 teaspoon dried dill
    1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
    1/4 cup flour
    8 ounces boneless firm white fish fillet, such as haddock or cod, cut into bite-sized pieces
    6 ounces shrimp
    6 ounces scallops
    Salt and pepper

1. In a large pot of simmering water, boil the potatoes just until tender. Drain and set aside.

2. In a large, heavy-bottomed saucepot, sauté the diced onion, carrot and celery in 2 tablespoons butter until the vegetables are softened, stirring constantly to avoid coloring. Add the water and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and whisk in the fish base. Add the potatoes, cream, dill, thyme and pepper.

3. In a separate pan, melt the remaining one-fourth cup butter over medium heat. Add the flour, stirring constantly, and cook for 2 to 4 minutes to make a roux. Whisk the roux into the chowder and continue to cook until thickened over medium-high heat, approximately 2 to 4 minutes after the mixture has reached a boil.

4. Add the fish, shrimp and scallops to the chowder just before serving, and simmer until the seafood is fully cooked, about 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Each of 8 servings: Calories 341; Protein 14 grams; Carbohydrates 26 grams; Fiber 3 grams; Fat 20grams; Saturated fat 13 grams; Cholesterol 111 mg; Sugar 4 grams; Sodium 518 mg.

Love cooking as much as I do? Follow me @noellecarter