The Angler's Table

Great seafood recipes shared by great chefs

Halibut Chowder

By Yanni

So finally, our winter time temperatures have dropped and I say it’s time for fish soup. How about a halibut chowder? Why chowder? It’s a classic American fish soup that’s perfect on a cold winter night. And, it can be made from your fresh catch, such as halibut. My new recipe is filled with traditional ingredients and then presented in an easy-to-make fashion for us fishermen. Starting with crispy bacon, heavy cream, fresh dill and then, homemade croutons! And here’s my favorite part, I use my favorite white wine along with my homemade fish stock. Yum! 



Will any fresh fish do? You bet, but, a lot of fishermen are coming home with halibut since our coastal California halibut seem to be in spawning early this winter. Who can blame them? We have had nothing but warm weather up until this week. So, take advantage of these cold nights and put together this tasty halibut chowder. It’s fun to make–while drinking your favorite white wine–enjoy!


Halibut Chowder  (serves 4)

1 1/2lbs of halibut fillets 3/4-in cubed

3 potatoes 3/4-in cubed

2-3 carrots diced

1 onion diced

3 stalks of celery diced

4 cups of fish stock, vegetable or chicken stock optional

2 cups white wine (dry)

2 cups heavy cream

3 bay leafs

kosher salt

coarse black pepper

1/2 package of bacon cut into small bite sized pieces

2 slices of sourdough bread

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

2 tablespoons of general all purpose flour

1 large clove of garlic

4 tablespoons of fresh dill

1 tablespoon butter


Start Making the Halibut Chowder

1) In a large soup pot, start frying up the bacon until the pieces become nice and crispy. Set aside, and then add the onion, carrots, and celery. Also, now is the best time to add 2 tablespoons of flour. Don’t forget to add a pinch salt and pepper, while continuing to stir and saute for 10-15 minutes in the bacon fat.

2) Add 4 cups of fish stock, and then add 2 cups of white wine. Now is the time to add the three bay leafs, and then bring this soup mixture to a boil.

3) Now add the potatoes and then simmer for 15-20 minutes until the potatoes are tender.


Now Is The Best Time To Make The Croutons For This Halibut Chowder

4) Toast two slices of sourdough bread and then rub a bare garlic clove on one side of each piece of bread. Drizzle some extra virgin olive oil on both slices and then top with a pinch of salt and pepper. Now, begin to cut each slice into one-by-one inch pieces. Heat the butter in a hot frying pan, throw in the sourdough pieces and toast further. Set aside when they achieved a nice golden brown color.


Finishing The Halibut Chowder

5) Now is the time to add the heavy cream. Let this simmer for another 5-10 minutes, and then add the diced halibut. After a few minutes, give your soup a taste test while checking for saltiness. Add if required.

6) Remove the bay leafs and then start to garnish. Add the croutons, bacon bits and finally some fresh dill. Serve and enjoy.