This gourmet seafood recipe comes courtesy of guest contributor, Ken Weik. As if the chowder wasn’t good enough on its own, it is “garnished” with a tender piece of pan roasted halibut. This is definitely a recipe you’ll want to break out when you have guests coming over that you want to impress.
Seafood Chowder with Pan Roasted Halibut – What You’ll Need:
- 1 Large Shallot (finely diced)
- 2 Cups Seafood Stock
- 1 Cup Bar Harbor Maine Lobster Juice
- 1/2 Cup Brandy
- 1/2 Cup Dry White Wine
- 2 Slices Thick Cut Bacon (cut into lardons)
- 1/2 Cup Heavy Cream
- 1 Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 2 Tbsp Canola Oil
- 3/4 Cup Fresh or Frozen Yellow Sweet Corn
- 16 Littleneck Clams (scrubbed and rinsed)
- .75 Lbs Chopped Fingerling Potatoes
- Bunch of Tarragon
- 4 7-oz. Filets of Wild, Fresh, Alaskan Halibut (Boneless and Skinless)
- Sea Salt
- Freshly Cracked Black Pepper
- 2 Tbsp Unsalted Butter
Seafood Chowder with Pan Roasted Halibut – What You’ll Need to Do:
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Put sheet tray in oven while it preheats. Chop potatoes into bite-sized pieces and toss with drizzle of EVOO, salt, and pepper. Roast potatoes until crunchy on the outside and soft in the middle, about 45 minutes.
- Pull Halibut from refrigerator, pat dry with paper towels and allow to come to room temperature.
- Meanwhile, heat a large pot over medium heat. Add a drizzle of EVOO and the lardons. Cook the bacon until the fat is completely rendered, remove the bacon and reserve for garnish.
- Add your finely diced shallot to the pot, stirring frequently as to not let it or any remnants of bacon burn. Once the shallot is soft, add the wine and brandy, turn the heat to high, and cook until very little liquid remains.
- Add the seafood stock and the lobster juice, bring the pot to a boil and reduce the liquid by half. Add the clams, cover the pot, and cook until they open, pulling them out as they do. If any clams do not open, discard.
- Add cream, corn, roasted potatoes (reduce temperature to 350 after removing from oven). Maintain a light simmer, do not allow the chowder to over-reduce. Tear up some of the tarragon leaves and fold into chowder. Check seasoning, add salt and pepper if needed.
- Aggressively season the Halibut with salt and pepper (season right before cooking, do not salt in advance).
- Heat a large oven-proof pan (stainless steel or cast iron) over high. Add canola oil. When the oil is very hot and begins to shimmer, add the Halibut. Do not flip or move the fish at all. After about 2 minutes of cooking, add butter and a good amount of tarragon to the pan. Use a large, long-stemmed spoon to baste the fish in the tarragon-infused butter. Transfer to oven, allow to cook for another few minutes until the fish is fully cooked, not more than 6 or 7 minutes (will depend upon the size and thickness of filets). (Note: Be more willing to undercook the fish, than overcook it. Residual heat once pulled from the oven will be significant and the chowder will also act to further cook the Halibut.)
- To serve: Place each Halibut filet in the center of a large, shallow bowl. Ladle the chowder around the fish. Position clams on top of the chowder. Add reserved bacon on top, then finish with a few more freshly torn tarragon leaves. Serve immediately.