Frankenstein invites y’all over for soup, titling it White Lines, referring to the Grandmaster Flash side that was the B to The Message on the Sugar Hill 12-inch, back in the day.
Uhm-hunh. some fond memories involvin’ the ladies ensue. unh-huh. Well, one lady anyway.
Wha? Oh, sorry. Soouup.
Anne brings it. Oh, baby, it has aready been brungen. Let the soup be steamin’!
Meanwhile, my own previously acclaimed recette for Guiness Beef Stew aside, we’ve been eatin’ Smoked Salmon Chowdah chez nous these past few days.
These past few sunny, fifty-something, cloudless, walk-to-the-market-for-fresh-vegetables days.
How is it done?
I cheated and looked in Sunset, which featured a smoked salmon chowder on the cover – but they both portioned it for a huge party (with about seven pounds of raw ingredients) and requested 3 pounds of fresh fennel heads, which honestly, I might be able to pick up at the Pike Place Market. But dude. Uh, not this time. Walkin’ to Safeway, OK? Not drivin’ the damn Jag.
So here’s theirs:
and here’s my variation.
- halve quantities in the Sunset recipe (except for the salmon).
- screw the fennel, substitute a tablespoon or so of fennel seed. Grind it – I used a mortar and pestle.
- Green onion stalks are a good substitute for the chives.
- Use whole milk. Yum.
Trim and chop the scallions and the leeks. In a saucepan, sauté them in the butter with the powdered fennel until limp.
Heat the broth (at half quantities, that’s about 2 and 1/2 cups) in a deep soup pan. Add the bay leaf and transfer the limped greens to the broth. Rinse the saucepan.
Cut up yon taters. If you want to add some vegembles, do so. I added chopped carrots and corn. Add to broth-pot, which should be merrily a-boil. Let it rock for a moment, then turn it down to a simmer.
Prep the smoked salmon by slicing into strips, unless it’s already sliced (if you bought the lox, for example).
Here’s the tricky part. Add 1/2 cup flour, 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/8 teaspoon pepper to the flour. Add a bit of milk to the flour in a mixing bowl. Whisk until smooth. Add the rest of the milk – total should be about 2 1/2 cups.
Once you have this smoothly whisked, add to the simmerin’ stock. Cover the salmon to the cats don’t get at it, and grab a beer or some vino or somethin’. Come back in about 20 minutes.
Serve with the salmon on the side – tossing it into the chowder will make it quite salty, and it’s extremely rich. Let your soup feeders dose themselves.