Saturday, September 9, 2017

Red Pepper Fish Chowder

For weeks we have endured record-breaking high temperatures and a record-shattering number of days without rain. It seems that the entire western part of the U.S. is aflame, while in the south a year's worth of precipitation descended in a 48-hour period.

But today we received a brief respite--there is rain in the forecast and for once I won't have to turn on the sprinklers in an effort to keep alive the landscape we have tried so hard to build in the past quarter century.

I have many indoor projects that can now receive my undivided attention (two quilts and a basket of knitting yarn), and I have an excuse to prepare a big pot of fish chowder for dinner.
Prep time: 10 min
Cook time: 45 min
Ready in: 55 min
Yields: about 4 servings


  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 cup red onion, minced
  • 1/2 cup red bell pepper, minced
  • 1/2 cup celery, minced
  • 3 slices turkey bacon, chopped
  • 1 cup chicken or vegetable broth
  • 2 cups Yukon gold potatoes, diced, but not peeled
  • 1 cup fresh or frozen corn
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 1/4 cup sour cream, (don't use non-fat!)
  • 1 large tomato, chopped and seeded
  • 3/4 pound firm white fish cut into 3/4-inch dice, (see note below)
  • 1/4 tsp. black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons fennel fronds, (optional)


  1. Heat the olive oil over medium heat in a large sauté pan. Add the onions, bell pepper, and celery. Sauté until the vegetables are tender, about 5 minutes. Add the turkey bacon and sauté about 5 minutes more (until the bacon is crispy and the vegetables begin to turn golden in color).
  2. In the same pan add the broth and bring to a simmer. Add the diced potatoes and corn; cook until potatoes are tender, about 15 minutes.
  3. Stir together the cornstarch, water, and sour cream. Stir this mixture into the hot broth, whisking constantly, until the broth begins to thicken.
  4. Add the chopped tomato, fish, and black pepper. Simmer 5 minutes more or until fish is cooked. Ladle chowder into bowls and garnish with chopped fennel.

What type of fish can I use?

  • halibut
  • cod
  • turbot
  • tilapia
  • mahi mahi
  • scrod

What Makes this Recipe Work

  • Lots of vegetables!
  • Use what you have on hand
  • Quick and easy to prepare
  • A one-pot meal
  • Did I mention easy?

Saturday, September 2, 2017

Thought for Today, in the Aftermath of Harvey

“No one has ever become poor by giving.” 

“There is no exercise better for the heart than reaching down and lifting people up.” 

“You have not lived today until you have done something for someone who can never repay you.” 

“We only have what we give.” 

“Love is not patronizing and charity isn't about pity, it is about love. Charity and love are the same -- with charity you give love, so don't just give money but reach out your hand instead.”