The weather is so crazy (global warming :o ) that it’s hard to decide what’s seasonal and what isn’t. Not that the season would have stopped me from making this lovely monkfish cheek chowder! My “monger” had the goods and of course I couldn’t resist, nor did I try. Rain, smain. It’s just given me the perfect excuse. So turn up the air-co and pretend it’s November.
Monkfish Cheek Chowder
1 1/2 lbs monkfish cheeks
2 tbsp butter
1/3 cup bacon, diced
1 celery branch, roughly chopped
1 onion, roughly chopped
Leaves from 1 branch fresh tarragon, chopped
1/2 cup white wine
4 large potatoes, roughly diced
4 cups fish stock
Salt and pepper
1 cup milk
1 cup cream
Lightly brown the monkfish cheeks in the butter, remove and cut into quarters. Set aside. Add the bacon to the pan and cook until it begins to brown, then add the celery, tarragon and onion and cook until the onion begins to soften. Add the white wine and boil for 2 minutes. Set aside.
Put the potatoes in a large stock pot, then add the fish stock, potatoes, reserved vegetables with bacon, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil and then simmer for 10 minutes. Add the reserved monkfish cheeks and simmer for an additional 10 minutes.
Slowly stir in the cream and milk, heating without boiling. Serve immediately with slices of country bread.
Wine suggestion: Bourgogne Aligote