Are you a crab bisque lover? This year the Alaska Department of Fish and Game announced the Bering Sea snow crab season will remain closed for 2022-23. Alaska’s fisheries produce 60 percent of the seafood sold in the U. S. With a decrease in supply, crab prices might go through the roof. Crab might become something we just can’t afford. If you love crab bisque but are pinching pennies, try my salmon bisque recipe. It’s just as delicious and comforting!
Salmon Bisque Serves 4
The perfect comfort food on cold, autumn nights. Serve with a green salad and crusty bread.
½ pound fresh salmon 1 cup water reserved from poaching salmon
In a small saucepan, poach salmon over medium heat in just enough water to cover until salmon flakes easily when pierced with a fork, about 5 to 7 minutes. Cool, flake, and set aside, reserving approximately 1 cup of water used for poaching. If you don’t have 1 cup of reserved water, add enough water to make 1 cup. Add salmon and reserved water to the blender and purée.
4 tablespoons butter ⅓ cup green onions, thinly sliced 1 teaspoon minced garlic ⅓ cup all-purpose flour 2 cups milk 2 cups half-and-half Salmon purée ½ cup canned tomato purée 3 tablespoons brandy 1 teaspoon dried dill or 1 tablespoon fresh dill 1 teaspoon salt ¼ teaspoon ground white pepper
For the garnish: Paprika, to taste Crushed red pepper flakes, to taste Dill, dried or fresh, to taste
In a large kettle, melt butter over medium heat. Add green onions and garlic and sauté until onions are tender. Blend in flour. Cook, stirring constantly, for 3 minutes. Slowly whisk in milk and half-and-half, stirring constantly until thickened. Add salmon purée, tomato purée, brandy, dill, salt, and white pepper. Simmer for 15 minutes, stirring frequently to keep soup smooth. If desired, garnish with paprika, crushed red pepper flakes, and dill.
Shopping for salmon: Salmon fillets and steaks should have ﬁrm, elastic ﬂesh and a moist, fresh appearance. Avoid salmon with browning around the edges. Fillets and steaks should not have separated from the bones. If kept too long in the case, fillets will separate. When pressed, the ﬂesh of fresh salmon should spring back. It should have no evidence of bruising or reddening. Avoid buying salmon packaged in liquid. It will deteriorate more quickly.
Storing salmon: The best ﬁsh is the freshest, no more than 2 to 3 days out of the water. Therefore, I always buy fresh salmon the same day I use it. Salmon will keep 1 to 2 days in the refrigerator. Once cooked, salmon will keep for 3 to 4 days in the refrigerator.
Carol Ann Kates is the award-winning author of cookbook, Secret Recipes from the Corner Market and Grocery Shopping Secrets. She’s an expert in how to shop, select, and store produce for maximizing home cooking outcomes and minimizing time and money spent. As a former supermarket and deli operator, Carol Ann shares grocery-insider wisdom—the same expertise you used to receive when patronizing a mom-and-pop establishment. Contact her at CarolAnn@CarolAnnKates.com and explore her website, www.CarolAnnKates.com.
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