Fish & Seafood

Talakitok belly and corn chowder

I grilled a huge fish belly for dinner yesterday but hubby came home with a mango cream pie from Red Ribbon before dinner was ready. We ended up eating the pie before dinner. Naturally, we had leftovers. Instead of cooking a new dish from scratch for today’s lunch and the kids’ packed school lunch, I decided to “recycle” the leftover grilled fish belly. Thing with grilled fish is it doesn’t reheat well. It loses its natural juices. I didn’t want to short-change the kids by sending them re-heated dry fish for lunch so I thought something with a thickish sauce would be good. I had half a bag of frozen corn kernels in the freezer, some white onions and plenty of butter. A chowder seemed like a good idea.

casaveneracion.com Talakitok belly and corn chowder

So, what is a chowder? Dictionary.Com defines a chowder as “a thick soup containing fish or shellfish, especially clams, and vegetables, such as potatoes and onions, in a milk or tomato base.”

For a detailed description of the fish known in the Philippines as talakitok, click here.

Ingredients :

Cold grilled talakitok belly or fillets
1/4 c. of butter
1-1/2 tbsps. of flour
1 large onion, halved and thinly sliced
1/2 c. of cream
2 c. of broth
3/4 c. of fresh, canned or frozen yellow corn kernels
1 tsp. of finely slivered mint leaves
salt and pepper to taste

Cooking procedure :

With your hand, tear the fish into fairly large chunks. Remove any remaining bones and skin.

Melt half of the butter in a heavy sauce pan. Cook the onions until soft. Remove with a slotted spoon and transfer to a bowl. Keep warm.

Add the remaining butter to the pan and heat until frothy. Add the flour all at once. Cook, stirring, until the mixture is a light golden color. Pour in the broth, a little at a time, while stirring the mixture to prevent lumps from forming. Next, add the corn kernels and the fish chunks. Season with salt and pepper. Return the onion to the pan. Stir well. Bring to a slow boil then simmer for about a minute. Turn off the heat, stir in the cream and the mint leaves.

Serve hot.

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