Chowder versus bisque: what’s the difference?
Callyn Harding, a chef at Harmons Cooking School, notes that both are seafood soups, but chowders are creamy, thick and loaded with chunky veggies and bits of seafood like clams, scallops or fish. A bisque is creamy but oh-so smooth. A velvety rich, stock-based lobster bisque is a classic.
Harding’s cooking journey began on the island of St. Thomas, where she worked and traveled up and down the East Coast aboard a private yacht. Her training continued at the Natural Gourmet Institute in New York City. She now works at Harmons new market in Holladay, teaching an array of classes. Beyond seafood, she specializes in ethnic cuisines.
Harmons Chef Callyn Harding’s Scallop & Clam Chowder
This recipe not only uses clams but also scallops. It may be more expensive to make, Chef Harding says, but scallops make it “so much more yummy.”
4 tablespoon unsalted butter
½ cup diced yellow onion
½ cup all-purpose flour
3 cups clam juice, warmed
½ cup white wine
2 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped
1 tablespoon fresh dill, chopped
1 bay leaf
½ cup half & half
½ pound sea scallops, quartered
½ pound clams
½ cup fresh corn kernels
Additional fresh parsley for garnish
In a medium heavy-bottomed pot, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the onions and sauté until translucent.
Whisk in the flour; reduce heat to low and cook for five minutes, stirring constantly until the raw flour smell has turned to a fragrant nutty scent.
Slowly incorporate the clam juice while stirring with a whisk to avoid lumping. Stir in the wine, parsley, dill and bay leaf. Simmer over low heat for an additional 30 to 45 minutes. Remove the bay leaf and whisk in the half & half.
On a medium-low heat, slowly cook the sea scallops and clams in the hot chowder until firm. Add the fresh corn kernels while the scallops are cooking. Finish with a parsley or other fresh herb garnish and serve immediately.
To learn how to make this dish and other seafood recipes, visit: