To get our blog readers and Tastemaker Challengers in the spirit of Challenge #1, “Potatoes Celebrate National Seafood Month,” we thought we’d share a seafood and potato recipe as well as a few seafood tips from McCormick & Schmick’s, which so generously donated the seafood for this challenge. Here are a few fun seafood facts in the spirit of National Seafood Month:
• Shrimp is America’s favorite seafood, followed by salmon. At McCormick & Schmick’s restaurants nationwide, diners feast on approximately 515,000 pounds of shrimp and 470,000 pounds of salmon each year.
• The American Heart Association and USDA dietary guidelines recommend eating seafood at least twice a week. Yet, the vast majority of Americans, 86.7 percent, have seafood only once per week or less.
And a few tips on cooking and serving seafood (hint, hint Tastemakers!) from The King of Seafood, Chef Bill King, of McCormick & Schmick’s:
• When pairing seafood, pay attention to flavors and textures. Some of the best seafood combinations to try are halibut with shrimp and salmon with crab cakes.
• When pairing wine with seafood, you don’t have to go with whites every time. In fact, many varieties of seafood pair better with red varietals. For example, try ordering a glass of Pinot Noir to go with salmon.
• Think seafood and cheese don’t go together? Think again! Look to dishes like McCormick & Schmick’s Parmesan-Crusted Tilapia served with capers and lemon butter sauce for inspiration.
In the mood for seafood now? Here’s the USPB’s recipe for Fast and Fit Clam Chowder to help satisfy that craving. Check back tomorrow for an update on the Tastemaker Challenge #1!
Fast and Fit Clam Chowder
Makes 4 Servings
Preparation Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
1 tablespoon butter or margarine
1 cup chopped leeks or onions
1 cup diced red and/or green bell peppers
2 cans (6 1/2 ounces each) chopped clams in clam juice
2 pounds (6 medium) potatoes, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1 can (14 1/2 ounces) reduced-sodium chicken broth
2 teaspoons dried thyme
1 cup lowfat milk
1 package (10 ounces) frozen whole kernel corn, thawed and drained
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
Salt and pepper, to taste
Place butter in 2 1/2- to 3-quart microwave-safe bowl. Microwave on HIGH 1 minute. Add leeks and bell peppers; microwave on HIGH 3 minutes. Drain juice from clams into microwaved vegetables, reserving clams. Stir in potatoes, broth and thyme. Cover with plastic wrap, venting one corner. Microwave on HIGH 20 minutes. With slotted spoon remove 4 cups cooked potatoes; set aside. Pour contents of bowl into container of electric blender; add milk, and holding lid down tightly, blend until smooth. Return mixture to bowl. Stir in reserved clams and potatoes, the corn and cayenne; season with salt and pepper. Microwave on HIGH 3 minutes until heated through. If desired, pass bowls of shredded Cheddar cheese, chopped parsley and/or crumbled cooked bacon to stir into soup.