Red Curry Salmon Chowder

simple winter chowder

I mentioned this soup as a teaser in a previous post.  I’ve made it twice now and really love it.  The flavors are everything you want when the snow is falling.  (I also think it will be a good rain soup).  I usually cook vegetarian food, but sometimes we like to indulge in fish.  Salmon is our favorite.  Growing up in California was good and bad:  good because we were exposed to a lot of really superb, fresh, local ingredients that could be picked up at any of the local farmer’s markets (which included fishermen); bad because trying to compare that to what is available in the Texas panhandle…is not something you should do.

SO, we make do, and I have found that the frozen, wild-caught packaged Salmon from Natural Grocers and the “fresh” (once frozen) wild caught Salmon from Market street works perfectly well in this chowder.  (We do miss fresh fish, but guess what?  You can get fresh Okra here!)

There are two things I find spectacularly fabulous about this recipe:  It’s gluten-free (check your fish sauce and curry paste to be sure) and dairy-free.  The rich, creamy texture is from the coconut milk!

salmon_curryI found this original recipe in the December 2011 edition of Delicious Living magazine.

RED CURRY SALMON CHOWDER // Serves 4

Ingredients:

  • 1 TBS Coconut oil (although any oil can work, the flavor matches the rest of the dish so well)
  • 1 small onion
  • 2 Cups Sliced mushrooms ( I used Baby Bellas)
  • 1 TBS Thai red curry paste (found in the Asian section of most markets)
  • 1 TBS fresh grated ginger
  • 4 Cloves Garlic, minced
  • 1 Small Fresno or Thai pepper, chopped (jalapeno will work in a pinch, although Thai is best)
  • 1 14 oz can Coconut Milk (light or regular)
  • 2 Cups Veggie broth or fish stock (see my post here on making your own simple stock)
  • 2 tsp fish sauce (in all likelihood it also will be located near the red curry paste)
  • 2 tsp Honey
  • 1 pound skinless Salmon fillet, cut into big-ish, bite-size chunks
  • 2 small heads ( about 1 pound)  Bok choy, thinly sliced (the 2nd time I made this I subbed a half bundle of curly kale)
  • 1/2 cup each loosely packed basil & cilantro leaves (or just choose 1 of these-Cilantro works well)
  • 2 Large limes ** DO NOT OMIT THIS.  IT ADDS DEPTH AND THE ACIDITY THIS SOUP NEEDS FOR BALANCE!!!

What You Do:

1.  Heat oil in medium-large saucepan and add onions and mushrooms to cook until soft (3-5 min).

2.  Stir in curry paste, ginger, garlic, & pepper; cook for 1 minute, stirring constantly.

3.  Add coconut milk, broth, fish sauce and honey and bring to a boil.

4.  Add salmon and greens.  Reduce heat to low and simmer, covered, for 3-6 minutes (depending on Salmon thickness) and until greens are tender.

5.  Dish into bowls, sprinkle with a generous helping of herbs and squeeze half a lime over the top and gently stir.

Salmon Curry SoupI hope you try this if you like Salmon!  I am trying to cram in the last of my favorite soup recipes (at least for this year) before Spring hits.  Then it will be all about salads! 🙂

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