Boundary Bay that makes the most incredible Smoked Salmon Chowder. And since we did a roasted chicken with cornbread dressing and all the other trimmings just last month, we decided our Christmas meal might be a good bit simpler, leaving us time for a hike this afternoon.
2 cups diced potatoes
1 cup diced carrots
1 1/2 cups onions, chopped
1/2 cup celery, chopped
2 T fresh chopped garlic
1 1/2 cup clam juice
1 1/2 cup white wine (we're using SilverLake Sauvignon blanc)
1 tsp dried thyme
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter
1/2 cup flour
3 cups heavy cream
1 cup smoked salmon (approx) I like VIS Seafoods' traditional smoked salmon
In a large, heavy-bottom Dutch oven, sauce or stock pan (5 quart is the size I use) combine the wine, clam juice, and thyme. Add the diced vegetables and boil until tender. Reduce heat to a simmer.
Warm the cream (you can actually do this in a microwave - but be careful not to boil or scald, and if you're aghast at the calories, you can use whole milk). Melt the stick of butter, whisk the flour into the melted butter to make a roux, (keep your heat low, you're looking for white-to-blond roux, not darker—so be careful not to brown the butter or flour) and add in the warmed cream.
Making sure the clam juice/wine/veggie mix is not actually boiling, add the cream roux into the soup pot, stirring gently. Add the flaked salmon. Let simmer another 15 minutes or so, then serve. This is marvelous in bread bowls, or with crusty hunks of warmed baguette, and the rest of that bottle of white wine you used in the chowder stock.
Have a very Merry Christmas, everyone!