I accept the fact that I’m not a house-husband who stays at home and has the time to plan out every meal of the week. Working a demanding fulltime job, having three dogs, as well as an aging mother that needs help, is more than enough.
On a weeknight, often I find myself at the supermarket, roaming the isles and looking at what’s fresh and what calls to me. I’m literally a man in search of dinner while roaming the isles of Winco, Roth’s or Fred Meyer.
On this night, it’s raining outside and chilly. It really feels like fall. The trees have finally released their grip of their wrinkled and leaves that were only a month ago full of color.
I shake the chill off as I entered Winco and thought a hearty soup sounded good. But what? French Onion? Minestrone? I had my answer as I walked past the seafood counter and eyed some Tony’s Smokehouse smoked salmon (made in Oregon City) in vacuum packed plastic in the cooler. Tonight it would be smoked salmon chowder.
Smoked Salmon Chowder
About ½ pound smoked salmon, broken by hand into small pieces
¼ cup dry sherry or dry white wine
6 cups half and half
3 yukon gold potatoes, peeled and sliced into cubes
2 celery stalks, finely chopped
Half of a large yellow onion, finely chopped
2 teaspoons thyme
1 teaspoon salt (or more to taste)
1 teaspoon sweet paprika
2 tablespoons lard or cooking oil
In pot over medium heat, heat the lard or oil and add onions and cook until they begin to turn translucent, stirring occasionally.
Add celery, seasonings and spices and stir until celery begins to cook. Add white wine, potatoes, half and half, stir and cover over low heat and cook until potatoes are nearly done. Stir in the salmon, cover and cook until the potatoes are done.
Serve while hot.
A good wine to pair with this dish is an Oregon chardonnay such as Durant Vineyards Chardonnay.