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Classic Fish Chowder


Capture time in a cup with this enduring fish stew, traditionally loaded with the catch of the day. It's bursting with the pure flavors of cod, haddock, or even pollack, as well as tender potatoes, creamery butter, and robust, salty fatback.

  • Servings: 4

Source: Martha Stewart Living, August 2008


  • 1 ounce (2 tablespoons) unsalted butter
  • 3 thin slices fatback, rinsed, or 2 slices bacon
  • 4 stems fresh flat-leaf parsley, tied, plus more, finely chopped, for garnish
  • 1 fresh bay leaf
  • 1 large russet potato, peeled, cut into 1/2- to 3/4-inch dice
  • 3 cups Fish Fumet for Classic Fish Chowder
  • 1 pound white fish, such as cod, haddock, or pollack, cut into 1 1/2-inch pieces
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 2 teaspoons coarse salt
  • Freshly ground pepper, for serving


  1. Melt butter in a large pot over low heat. Add fatback or bacon, and cook for 3 minutes. Discard pork. Add parsley, bay leaf, potato, and fish fumet. Simmer gently until potato is tender, 6 to 8 minutes.

  2. Add fish, cover, and gently simmer until fish is just cooked through, about 2 minutes. Gently stir in milk and salt, and heat until warmed through, about 30 seconds. Remove from heat. Discard parsley and bay leaf. Serve chowder immediately with freshly ground pepper and chopped parsley on the side.

Cook's Notes

Homemade fish fumet, or stock, intensifies the flavor of the chowder, but good-quality store-bought fish stock can be substituted.

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