"This summer, I will try more recipes for fish and healthy seafood."
So said I a month ago. But, I tried my first recipe today, which is only two days after the official start of summer, so I'm all good, right?
Steve's not a huge fan of seafood and I'm a little skiddish of making it at home, but a soup sounded like an easy way to go. And it was! It made our house smell great too.
Now, sure the recipe calls for bacon, oil, and cream, but don't let that scare you off. They're in reasonable amounts, and if you use healthy oil and fat free half and half, it helps. The bacon... well, its bacon. Not much you can do about that.
Side note on the fish - every chef or cook will tell you fresh seafood is better than frozen, which it is. But I had the tilapia in the freezer and forgot to thaw it. So I just cut it while it was frozen and it worked so well! The pieces were all a uniform size and cut really easily, and since it cooks in the broth, being frozen was not an issue.
The soup was really good! It was fresh-tasting, not too fishy, not too heavy, and with a little bread or salad on the side, makes a nice supper. The only drawback is (and this may not even bother you) that when it cooled, while I was putting the leftovers away, the soup smelled much fishy-er. I think it should re-heat fine, but next time, I'll just make enough for one meal and call it good.
Tilapia Corn Chowder
Not really adapted from Foodnetwork.com
2 ounces bacon (about 2 slices)
1 teaspoon canola oil
1 leek, white part only, halved lengthwise, rinsed and thinly sliced
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
4 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth
8 ounces Yukon Gold potatoes, diced
2 cups fresh or frozen corn kernels (about 4 ears)
1 1/2 pounds tilapia fillets, cut into bite-size pieces
1 teaspoon finely chopped fresh thyme (I didn't use this, don't let that stop you though!)
1 cup half-and-half
2 teaspoons lemon juice
2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives
Chop bacon and cook in a large Dutch oven over medium heat until crispy, 3 to 4 minutes. Drain on paper towels.
Add oil to the pan. Add celery, leek, salt and pepper and cook until the vegetables just begin to soften, about 2 minutes. Add broth, potatoes and corn. Bring to a gentle simmer. Cook until the potatoes are just tender and the corn is cooked through, about 8 minutes. Stir in tilapia and thyme; return to a gentle simmer. Cook until the tilapia is cooked through, about 4 minutes more. Remove from the heat.
Stir in half-and-half, lemon juice and the reserved bacon. Garnish with chives, if using.