Monday, March 4, 2013

CupcakesOMG's Seafood Chowder

You know what they say about the best-laid plans, right? Well this weekend was one that left me with all of my plans completely tossed out the window. I wound up making last night's dinner for lunch today, and I don't think I was able to give it my fullest attention in the process.

CupcakesOMG's Seafood Chowder recipe is definitely a winner. I love the use of whipped cauliflower (similar to the topping I use for my shepherd's pie) as a potato substitute, and the flavors Melissa incorporates are spot on.

My chowder never thickened up sufficiently, though, and it's largely because I went against my instinct. The recipe calls for arrowroot for thickening, but also suggests adding the starch to the pot at the same time as the seafood. Since the dish finishes off in the oven, you really don't want to overcook the seafood on the stove.

I think the best idea would be to add the arrowroot and allow the soup to thicken up BEFORE adding the fish. I had to pull mine because the shrimp were going to get tough, so I wound up with a thinner texture.

The flavor is still amazing though, and I'm actually kind of glad I didn't make it for dinner last night. Now I have lunch for the week!

I did make a few tweaks to the original recipe, so I'm including my version (plus the tweak I suggested above).
Paleo Seafood Chowder
adapted from CupcakesOMG!

2 heads cauliflower, cut into florets
3 tbs. butter or ghee
salt, pepper & garlic powder to taste
1 cup coconut milk
3 tbs. ghee
1 large onion, diced
3  cloves garlic, minced
3 large carrots, diced
1 slice bacon
4 cups organic chicken broth
1 can coconut milk
1 can wild salmon
1 lb. mahi mahi
1 lb. shrimp
2-3 tbs. arrowroot powder
1 cup frozen peas
salt & pepper to taste

Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees F.
Boil caauliflower in a large pot for 10 minutes or until soft. Drain and add back to pot. Add coconut milk and salt, pepper, garlic powder and butter or ghee. Use a stick blender to puree the mixture until smooth. Taste for seasoning and adjust as necessary.
In a large pot, saute onion in butter over medium heat until translucent. Add garlic and cook for another minute, until fragrant.
Add carrots and bacon and cook until the fat renders out of the bacon and carrots soften. About 3 minutes.
Remove the slice of bacon. Add stock and coconut milk and whisk well to combine. Season with salt and pepper. Bring to a simmer for about 5 minutes.
Ladle about a half cup of broth in a small bowl; whisk in 2-3 tbs. of arrowroot powder until smooth. Add back to the pot, stirring to combine. Allow to simmer until thickened to your liking.

Add fish and peas and simmer for 2-3 minutes. (You want the fish slightly undercooked so it doesn't get tough in the oven.)
Pour the chowder into a 9x13 rectangle pan and gently spoon mashed cauliflower over the top. Smooth out the topping and place into the oven for about 10 minutes.

Turn on broiler and brown the cauliflower for another 2-5 minutes. Let stand for a few minutes before serving.


  1. Thanks for the shout out. It's worth clarifying, I don't suggest adding the arrowroot at the same time as the seafood. The directions are somewhat vague, I'll admit, but you're supposed to add the arrowroot mixture back to the pot and whisk it to fully combine with the rest of the stock (you might even need to add more if it doesn't thicken, but bear in mind, it gets thicker the longer it cooks). Just want to make sure no one gets the wrong idea that I overcooked my seafood!

    1. Hi Melissa! I'm sure no one thought that, and hope you didn't take my comments negatively ;)

      I think you're right it's that the direections were a little vague, so it didn't specify to allow to soup to thicken up first. I can't imagine anyone is imagining your gorgeous photos contained overcooked seafood!

      thanks so much for the great recipe!