Nordic Seafood Chowder
This Nordic seafood chowder is all the right things—warm, cozy, and full of flavor from a homemade seafood stock. While there are many variations of Nordic chowder, most folks use egg yolks and heavy cream to thicken the stew. Here, we combine creamy skyr, egg yolks, and heavy cream. The result is rich, but not too heavy, and balances well with the sweet-salty flavor of Alaskan King Crab.
Serves 2 to 4
- 1 (7.5-ounce) pre-cooked Extra Large Alaskan King Crab Leg, thawed
- 1 small onion, finely chopped, peels saved for the stock
- 1 small carrot, finely chopped, peels saved for the stock
- 4 cloves garlic, finely minced, peels saved for the stock
- 1/2 fennel bulb, finely chopped, fronds and tougher bits saved for the stock
- 1/2 cup dill stems
- 1/8 teaspoon whole black peppercorns
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 cup clam juice
- 2 cups water
- 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- Salt and black pepper
- 1/2 cup dry white wine
- 8 ounces waxy, creamy potatoes such as Yukon Gold, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch cubes
- 2/3 pound white fish such as cod, cut into 1-inch chunks
- A handful of dill, finely chopped
- 1 large egg yolk, room temperature
- 1/4 cup heavy cream, room temperature
- 1/4 cup Icelandic Provisions Plain Thick & Creamy Skyr, room temperature
- Warm, crusty bread
- Extra-virgin olive oil
- Icelandic Provisions Plain Thick & Creamy Skyr
Make the Stock
- Twist apart the sections of the crab leg. Use seafood or kitchen shears to cut through the shell down the middle of each leg segment. Open each shell fully to reveal the meat, then use a regular fork or a crab fork to extract the meat.
- Cut the meat into bite-sized pieces then set aside (you will use the meat for the chowder). You should have about 4 ounces of crab meat.
- Tear or crack the crab shells in half.
- Place all stock ingredients in a medium dutch oven or pot, including the crab shells.
- Bring stock to a boil and skim off any scum from the surface of the pot. Reduce the heat and simmer for 20 minutes.
- Strain stock through a fine mesh sieve, reserving the liquid and discarding the solids. You should have just about 2 cups liquid; if you have less, add additional water to make 2 cups stock.
Make the Chowder
- Wipe the stock pot clean, then add the olive oil and set to medium heat over the stove.
- Sauté the onion, carrot, garlic, and fennel for 11 to 13 minutes until soft and translucent. Season with salt and black pepper.
- Add 1/2 cup wine and bring to a boil. Use a wooden spoon to scrape up any bits stuck to the bottom of the pan. Reduce the heat to a simmer and continue cooking until liquid reduces by half.
- Add the homemade stock and potatoes and bring to a boil. Cook until potatoes are mostly cooked through and can be pierced with a fork, but still have some give. Season with salt and pepper.
- Meanwhile, prepare the cream-egg mixture. In a small bowl, whisk the egg yolk, heavy cream, and skyr together until smooth and homogenous (no lumps should remain). Set aside.
- Reduce the heat of the pot to a simmer, and gently stir in the reserved crab meat and white fish. Add in half of the dill. Simmer until the crab meat is warmed through and the fish is cooked, about 2 minutes.
- Turn the heat off (this prevents the egg and yogurt from curdling). When the stew is still hot, but no longer bubbling, slowly stir in the cream-egg mixture until combined. The fish is delicate, so be gentle when stirring. Season with salt and pepper.
- Serve immediately with warm crusty bread. Divide stew among serving bowls, topping with extra dill and a drizzle of olive oil. If desired, dollop each bowl with a bit more skyr.
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