It’s been a little while since I’ve had a good bowl of chowder. This weekend while I was at the market with my husband, I noticed Dungeness crab was on sale for an incredible price. Unable to pass up on such a great deal, I had to grab one.

I already had a healthy supply of wild British Columbia Spot Prawns on hand. Wild West Coast Seafoods was selling them at the Langley Community Farmer’s Market, and I purchased a pound without hesitation when I noticed them. I decided to continue using a local approach with the rest of the ingredients in this chowder, and it did not disappoint!

West Coast Style Seafood Chowder

This chowder is loaded with wild sockeye salmon, mussels, clams, scallops, prawns, Dungeness  crab, and extra thick smoky bacon. I got my inspiration for this dish from a local Vancouver cookbook, “Vancouver Eats”, which breaks down the recipes for some of the best restaurants in the city.

In this book I learned that at Hook Seafood Bar, they thicken their seafood chowder with mashed potatoes, not flour or cornstarch. I was curious about this new method, and decided to give it a try! The result was delicious.

This chowder is loaded to the brim with some of my favourite seafood! But, one of the great things about chowder is its versatility. If you don’t like crab, swap it out for something else! If you love scallops, feel free to add some more! No matter what type of seafood you put in this recipe, it’s going to taste good.

West Coast Seafood Chowder

Course: Appetizer, Main Course
Cuisine: Canadian
Cost: $60-$100

Equipment

  • 1 Large Stock Pot
  • Cutting Board
  • Paring Knife
  • Chef Knife

Ingredients

  • 1 Dungeness Crab Cooked, Removed from Shell
  • 1/2 LBS British Columbia Spot Prawn Raw, Peeled & Deveined
  • 3/4 LBS Scallops
  • 1 Filet of Sockeye Salmon (around 1/3 – 1/2 lbs)
  • 1/4 LBS Mussels
  • 1/4 LBS Clams
  • 5-6 Slices of Extra Thick, Double Smoked Bacon
  • 1 Shallot Minced
  • 4 Cloves of Garlic Minced
  • 1/2 Cup Good-Quality White Wine
  • 1 1/2 Cup Mashed Potatoes
  • 4-5 Cups Fish Stock
  • Sea Salt To Taste
  • Fresh Cracked Peppercorn To Taste
  • 1 Large "Pinch" of Cayenne Pepper
  • 1 Large "Pinch" of Paprika
  • Chili Oil For Garnish
  • Fresh Chives For Garnish
  • Fresh Lemon Wedges

Instructions

  • Preheat a stock pan on the stove over medium heat.
  • Cut your bacon into 1 inch cubes, then drop them into your stock pot. Stir often until they are crispy and firm.
  • Add your shallots to the pot, and stir for about 30 seconds. Add your garlic, and toss for about 15-20 seconds, then add white wine to deglaze the bottom.
  • Add your mashed potato to the pot, along with fish stock. Using a whisk, stir quickly until they are emulsified. Reduce your heat to medium-low.
  • Add your salmon filet to your pot. You do not need to cut it. As it simmers, it will get extremely tender, and you will be able to break it into bite size pieces with a fork. Add crab, scallops, salt, pepper, paprika, and cayenne pepper to your pot. Stir and cover.
  • When you are ready to eat, add your cream to the pot. Toss in your mussels, clams, and spot prawns. Spot prawns can over cook easily, so it is important not to add them until the end!
  • Once your clams and mussels are open, remove your stock pot from the heat. Taste, and adjust with additional salt or pepper if required.
  • Squeeze 1-2 fresh lemon wedges into your chowder. Serve, garnished with a drizzle of chili oil, fresh chives, and additional lemon wedges.
  • Enjoy!

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