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Catfish Chowder with Bacon and Tomatoes

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Catfish Chowder

Catfish Chowder

Diana Rattray
This catfish chowder recipe is similar to a Manhattan clam chowder, but with catfish. The bacon adds flavor, but feel free to use 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil if you're counting calories or cutting down on fat. You can sprinkle purchased bacon bits on individual servings, if desired.

Ingredients:

  • 4 slices bacon, diced
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 2 medium carrots, quartered lengthwise then thinly sliced, about 1 cup
  • 1/2 green pepper, diced, about 1/2 cup
  • 2 ribs celery, diced
  • 2 cans (14.5 ounces each) diced tomatoes with juice
  • 2 bottles (8 ounces each) clam juice
  • 1 1/2 cups vegetable broth
  • 3 medium red skinned potatoes, cut into 1/2-inch chunks
  • 1 teaspoon Creole seasoning
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 tablespoon fresh chopped parsley or 1 teaspoon dried parsley flakes
  • 1 pound catfish fillets, cut into 1-inch chunks
  • salt and pepper to taste

Preparation:

In a large saucepan, sauté bacon until crisp; remove to paper towels. Drain off all but 1 tablespoon of the drippings. Add diced onion, carrot, green pepper, and celery; sauté until onion is tender and carrot has softened slightly.

Stir in the tomatoes, clam juice, and vegetable broth. Add potatoes, Creole seasoning, and thyme; bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer for about 20 to 25 minutes, or until vegetables are tender. Add the parsley and catfish; continue simmering for about 5 minutes, or until fish is opaque and cooked through. Taste and add salt and pepper to taste. Sprinkle with the bacon just before serving.

Serves 4 to 6.
*To cut back on fat and calories, use vegetable oil instead of bacon drippings to saute the vegetables, and sprinkle individual with purchased real bacon bits, if desired.

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