Smoked haddock chowder

Smoked haddock chowder

A Year In My Kitchen

This is a wholesome, calm, comforting winter soup. It’s really too much as a first course, but it makes a perfect lunch or late night supper – served simply with a salad and bread.


Quantity Ingredient
1kg undyed smoked haddock fillet
1 litre whole milk
6 black peppercorns
25g unsalted butter
2 rashers smoked streaky bacon, derinded and chopped
1 leek, washed, trimmed and diced
3 carrots, peeled and diced
3 celery sticks, diced
3 medium potatoes, peeled and chopped
2 lemon thyme sprigs
2 bay leaves
sea salt
freshly ground black pepper
100ml double cream
1 lemon, grated zest
small handful curly parsley leaves, very finely chopped


  1. Check the fish for any small pin bones. Pour the milk into a wide saucepan, add the peppercorns and place over a medium heat. Bring to just under a simmer, then add the smoked haddock and remove from the heat. Set aside until the haddock is cooled – the heat of the milk will be enough to gently poach the fish.
  2. Meanwhile, melt the butter in another saucepan over a gentle heat. When it is foaming, add the bacon and cook for 2–3 minutes or until lightly browned. Add the leek, carrots, celery, potatoes, thyme and bay leaves and season with a little salt and pepper. Cook over a low heat for 10 minutes or so, until the vegetables begin to soften.
  3. Drain the haddock, reserving the poaching milk. Once the fish is cool, remove the skin and flake the flesh, keeping it in large chunks. Add to the softened vegetables, then strain the milk into the pan (to remove the peppercorns). Turn the heat up very slightly and cook until the potatoes and carrots are tender. It is important that the milk doesn’t boil.
  4. Stir in the cream and warm through, then discard the herbs and check the seasoning. Ladle the chowder into warm soup plates and scatter over the lemon zest and finely chopped parsley to serve.
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