The next time you are filleting a fish, save the rib bones and the throats and freeze them until you have a couple of pounds for this great chowder recipe.
2 lbs. whole fish, scaled, cleaned, head removed or the scraps described above.
2 Bay leaves
2 Large onions - sliced
1 Carrot - sliced
2 Stalks celery with leaves - chopped
2 large potatoes - diced
2 cans evaporated milk
1 tsp. peppercorns
4 dashes tabasco
1/2 tsp. salt
1. Cover with water and bring ingredients to a boil. Simmer until meat falls from the bones.
2. Cool, then strain broth into a large pot
3. Separate meat from bones, taking care to remove all the little bones
4 Set fish aside
5. Fry out 2 (2 inch cubes) of fatback (Salt Pork)
6. Use the grease from the fatback to lightly saute 2 onions chopped and 2 large stalks of celery - finely chopped
7. Add the broth
8. Dice 2 large potatoes and add to the broth
9. Place broth and vegetables on the stove and boil until the potatoes are done.
10. When potatoes are done, add the fish, 2 cans evaporated milk, and 1 can of water and simmer for 10 minutes
11. Add the tabasco, dalt, black pepper and/or your favorite seafood seasoning to your taste.
12. You may add your own favorite vegetables such as whole kenel corn, tomatoes, etc. Improvise with your favorite seasonings to make this dish your own.
13. Serve in large bowls with a side salad and toasted garlic bread ... it's dinner!
Capt. Dick May is the owner of Easy Rider Charters in Bokeelia. He can be reached at 239-283-3247 or easyridercharters.com. "Capt. Dick's Seafood & Southern Country Cooking" (new cookbook) can be ordered for $14.95 plus $3 postage by calling the number above or by mailing a check (made out to Dick May) to 7989 Judge Bean Road, Bokeelia, FL 33922.