[Mood Tip: Seafood chowders are an excellent source of the antioxidant selenium, as well as calcium, vitamin D, and vitamin B12, nutrients that aid in brain function and mood regulation. For example, a study from the National Institute of Mental Health in Maryland found that some people battling insomnia sleep better when vitamin B12 intake is increased.]
Traditionally made with cream and butter, this chowder savors the flavor, but cuts the fat and calories to a fraction of the original. Serve with Crusty French Bread and a tossed salad.
2 tablespoons butter
1/4 cup carrots, peeled and grated
1/4 cup celery, diced
1/4 cup onion, diced
1/4 cup red bell pepper, diced (optional)
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
3 1/2 cups low-fat (1 percent) milk
2 medium baker potatoes, peeled and diced (approximately 2 1/2 cups)
salt and fresh-ground pepper to taste
1 cup fat-free half & half
1 pound cod fillet (or any white fish), cut into 1-inch chunks
1/2 pound shrimp meats, cooked
1) Melt butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add carrots, celery, onion, and red pepper and saute for 4 minutes, or until onions are transparent.
2) Stir in flour. Gradually add milk, whisking continually to avoid clumping. Add potatoes, salt, and pepper. Bring to boil, reduce heat, and simmer covered for 20 minutes or until potato is cooked through, but firm. Stir regularly to avoid burning on bottom.
3) Add half & half and cod, return to gentle boil, reduce heat, and simmer for 7 minutes or until cod is cooked through. Add shrimp and heat through, approximately 3 minutes. Adjust seasoning and serve. Makes 6 servings, approximately 1 1/2 cups each)
Nutritional Analysis per serving: 290 Calories; 20 percent fat (6.4 grams); 3.6 grams saturated fat; 42 percent protein; 38 percent carbohydrate; 1 gram fiber.