I love to make seafood soups and stews aboard the s/v Mystic Knot… most likely due to the availability of freshly caught fish and other seafoods. This halibut and clam soup is one of my favorite galley-gourmet style recipes. I found the recipe in an old Fine Cooking magazine I had onboard. Recipe below… with a few of my tweaks.
½ c. unsalted butter
4 c. baby portabella mushrooms, sliced
3 large leeks, white and light-green parts only, sliced
freshly ground black pepper
1+ t. red pepper flakes
2½ c. organic veggie broth
2 fresh bay leaves
1 inch piece fresh ginger
12 – 16 oz. skinless Alaska halibut chunks
16 to 24 small clams, scrubbed
½ c. dry white wine
1 T. finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
Melt the butter over medium heat in an large sauté pan with a lid. Add the mushrooms and leeks and season lightly with salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes. Cook gently, stirring occasionally, until softened but not browned, 7 to 8 minutes. Add the broth, bay leaves, and ginger. Raise the heat to medium high, and bring to a boil.
Season the halibut with salt and pepper. Nestle the fish and clams among the vegetables in the skillet. Add the wine. Bring the broth back to a boil, cover tightly, and reduce the heat to low. Cook gently until the fish is just cooked through and the clams have opened, about 7 minutes. If all of the clams are not open, remove the fish and the open clams and continue cooking until the remaining clams open, another 2 to 3 minutes. Discard any clams that haven’t opened by this time.
Serve soup-style in shallow bowls. Evenly disperse halibut and top with leeks and mushrooms, surrounded by clams and broth, and sprinkled with chopped parsley and lemon juice.