David Scott AllenProvencal RecipesSoupTaste

Fish and Fennel Chowder Soup

When you think of fish chowder New England probably springs to mind, but I made this on a cold winter day in Tuscan. Depending on where you live, and the time of year feel free to vary the fish accordingly. In Provence, with ready access to fresh seafood use cod (cabillaud) or sea-bream (daurade). We decided to serve this fish and fennel chowder around our outdoor fireplace enjoying an al fresco dinner with friends.

Fish Fennel Chowder Soup

Fish and Fennel Chowder

Easy and satisfying - a perfect soup.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 50 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 5 minutes
Course Soup
Cuisine North American
Servings 4 people


  • 2 Leeks (white and light green parts) cleaned
  • 2 fennel bulbs
  • 3 cups (720ml) Light Fish or Seafood Stock *
  • Salt
  • 1 lb (454g) Waxy Potatoes
  • 2 cups (480ml) Light cream or Half-and-Half
  • 12 oz (340g) firm White Fish can be mixed types *
  • 4 oz (114g) Smoked Salmon
  • Sweet Paprika for garnish
  • fennel fronds for garnish


  • Melt the butter over medium heat in a large stockpot.
  • Cut the cleaned leeks in half lengthwise then in 1/4-inch half rounds. Trim the fennel bulbs, cut them in half through the root end and slice thinly (I used a mandoline at the 1/8-inch setting). Add the leeks and fennel to the butter and stir to coat. Cover and cook for about 20 minutes until the vegetables are soft, stirring occasionally.
  • Peel and cut potatoes into 3/4-inch pieces. Add to the pot along with the fish stock and bring to a boil. Season well with salt. Reduce heat and simmer for 15-20 minutes, or until potatoes are tender.
  • Add the light cream to the pot and bring to a simmer. Cut fish into 1-inch pieces and add to the pot. Return to a simmer, then reduce heat and simmer gently for 5-7 minutes until white fish is cooked through.
  • Divide among heated bowls, sprinkle with paprika and fennel fronds, and serve hot.


* Notes: I used More Than Gourmet Classic Seafood Stock (this is not an endorsement, but I like it!), red potatoes — thought Yukon Gold Will work, though I don’t think blue potatoes would look so pretty — and a mixture of grouper and lingcod along with the smoked salmon.
Keyword Seafood Recipes, Soup
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Other Soup Recipes:

Coconut Curry Chicken Soup

Creamy Mushroom and Chestnut Soup

Marseille Fish Soup – Soupe de Poisson

Cauliflower Soup with Coconut Milk and Fresh Ginger

Butternut Squash Soup – Velouté de Butternut

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David Scott Allen

David Scott Allen

David Scott Allen is the author, photographer, and cook behind Cocoa & Lavender, a weekly food blog based in Tucson, Arizona. Passionate about travel, he especially enjoys eating traditional foods and learning local customs, whether in the United States or around the globe.

David's first trip to France took place when he was 14, and he returned as often as possible thereafter. However, it wasn't until his 50th birthday that he finally made it south to Provence. The beauty, history, charm, warmth, cuisine, and - of course - the rosé wines captured his heart. He shares his Provençal recipes here on Perfectly Provence, and his food and wine pairings monthly on the Provence WineZine.

David is a firm believer that sharing a meal with friends around the table is one of life's greatest pleasures. And if it happens to be in Provence, all the better!

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