Red Conch Chowder Recipe

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Florida Keys & Key West Chef's Table: Extraordinary Recipes from the Conch Republic

  • Yield: 10 Servings


  • ½ pound ground salt pork
  • 1 yellow onion, diced
  • 1 green bell pepper, diced
  • 3 tablespoons minced garlic
  • ¾ pound ground conch, drained
  • ½ cup tomato paste
  • 32 ounces water
  • 16 ounces stewed tomatoes
  • 1½ teaspoons crushed red pepper
  • 1½ teaspoons poultry seasoning
  • 1½ teaspoons dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon white pepper
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 pounds peeled potatoes, cut into small dice
  • Cilantro leaves
How to Make It
  1. Brown salt pork in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Drain grease and discard. Add onions, peppers, and garlic to the pan and sauté with the salt pork, stirring frequently, until vegetables are transparent, about 15–20 minutes. Add conch, reduce heat to medium-low, and sauté for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add tomato paste and water and stir to combine. Cook for 30 minutes more, stirring occasionally.
  2. Place stewed tomatoes in a blender and pulse to break them down. Add tomatoes, crushed red pepper, poultry seasoning, oregano, basil, thyme, white pepper, and bay leaf to the pot and stir to combine. Cook for 30–45 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add potatoes and cook for an additional 20–25 minutes. Transfer chowder to a container and refrigerate uncovered until totally cooled, then cover container. (Chowder freezes well and can be stored this way for several months.)
  3. To Serve
  4. Remove bay leaf from chowder. Reheat chowder in a large saucepan over low heat. Serve in shallow soup bowls and garnish with cilantro leaves.

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