BAY SCALLOP CHOWDER
Scallops: A New England Coastal Cookbook
by Elaine Tammi & Karin A. Tammi
Made fresh during bay scallop season after a run to the fish market, this chowder will warm you up in late fall and winter. Scallops are always added to the piping hot chowder base a few minutes before serving so as not to overcook the scallops. Serve in heated chowder bowls with common crackers or oyster crackers. This chowder tastes even better the second or even third day if any is left.
Serves 6 to 8
• 1/4 Ib. salt pork, diced or 4 tbsp. butter
• 2 medium onions, diced
• 2 cups potatoes, diced
• 4 cups light cream or half-and-half
• 1 tbsp. butter
• Bottled clam juice (optional)
• Salt and freshly ground black pepper
• 1½ Ib. bay scallops, or 1/2 Ib. sea scallops, trimmed, rinsed, patted dry, and chopped
• Heavy kettle or chowder pot
• Sauce pan
In a heavy kettle or chowder pot, cook diced salt pork until crisp. Remove and drain on towel.
Chop onions and add to pot. (Use 4 tbsp. of butter to cook onions if salt pork is not used.) Cook onion slowly until transparent.
Dice potatoes and cover with water. Once onions are cooked, add potatoes, but save potato water (or use bottled clam juice instead). Simmer onion and potato mix, covered, until potatoes are tender, for about 5 minutes.
In another saucepan, heat cream (you may use half- and-half), with 1 tbsp. butter over low to moderate heat. Do not boil. Add the cream to the chowder pot along with the saved potato liquid or clam juice, and salt and pepper. Heat chowder thoroughly. Add uncooked scallops to chowder and cook 1 to 2 minutes only and serve chowder hot. Ladle into bowls, add remaining herbs, and sprinkle each bowl with paprika.
Remove kettle or chowder pan from heat, allow to cool, and refrigerate overnight. Reheat, uncovered, on low until chowder steams, but do not boil. Serve hot.