Smoked salmon chowder

salmon chowderRemember that smoked salmon I pulled out of the freezer to make the twice-baked smoked salmon potatoes? I didn’t use it all for the potatoes, so I used the rest to make this smoked salmon chowder. It’s pretty rich and creamy — perfect for the cold season ahead. The bacon and smoked salmon add depth for full-bodied flavor.


  • 4 slices bacon
  • 2 c. okra, thinly sliced and divided
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled
  • 2 leeks, chopped (makes about 4 c.)
  • 2 tsp salt, divided
  • 1 c. mushrooms, chopped (I used a mixture of oyster, cremini and shiitake)
  • 4 c. chicken stock
  • 4 c. new potatoes, chopped (about 8 potatoes)
  • 1.5 c. smoked salmon, shredded
  • 3 c. heavy cream
  • Leaves from 4 sprigs fresh thyme, divided
  • black pepper to taste


  • Preheat the oven to 400°.
  • Spread the okra in a thin layer on a sheet pan and drizzle with olive oil and 1/2 tsp. of salt. Bake for about 20 minutes or until it begins to brown. (Be sure to watch — it burns quickly once it begins to get color.) Set aside and pull out a handful to reserve for garnish.
  • Cook the bacon over medium heat until crispy. Remove from pan, blot on paper towel and chop. Reserve the bacon drippings.
  • Add bacon grease and leeks to heavy stockpot over medium heat. Soften the leeks and add garlic, mushrooms and 1/2 tsp salt and cook for about another 2 minutes.
  • Add the chicken stock, potatoes, salmon and okra to the pot. Simmer over medium heat for about 20-30 minutes, or until potatoes are just soft.
  • Add the cream, thyme (reserving some for garnish), black pepper to taste and remaining teaspoon of salt and gently simmer (don’t boil) for another 20 minutes.
  • Allow to cool slightly and ladle into bowls. Garnish with additional roasted okra and fresh thyme.

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