Dishing Up the Dirt

Autumn Salmon Chowder

It happened. We finally had our first annual “kill frost” of the 2020 farm season. That means we are saying goodbye to a lot of the field crops like peppers, eggplants, zucchini, field greens, and herbs. The first kill frost of the fall is always bittersweet. On the one hand we’re mentally and physically tired from the spring and summer so it’s almost nice to just say “peace out” to half of the farm. But it’s also a little sad at the same time.  We knew the frost was coming and were prepared for it by row covering plants that we need to help carry us through to the end of the farmers market season but in the end, we didn’t get to cover everything and so we had to say “see ya next year” to a lot of veggies. Luckily, we have some fresh greens staying cozy in some of the greenhouses which is critical for us so we have some variety for these last few weeks of farmers markets and CSA drops, but it’s always bittersweet to say goodbye to certain crops that I’m usually not quite ready to part with (thank god we did some canning and preserving this season!) So what does that all have to do with this chowder? Well everything!!! It’s cold here, like really cold! We’ve had a fire going in the woodstove for 5 days straight and sitting by the stove with a bowl of hot chowder is just what the doctor ordered this week. We used green beans (that I had frozen from early in the summer) with fall crops like turnips, potatoes and fresh dill. The salmon was caught just right down the road from us in the Columbia River and the bacon was from our neighbors pigs. We even scored some local milk to use as the base for the soup. In the end, it was quite the “local” chowder and we absolutely loved it! If you’re feeling like you need a little comfort food that will warm you from the inside out, this is the soup for you. I hope you all enjoy it as much as we did. Cheers to the changing season.

Autumn Salmon Chowder

Prep Time: 15 minutes    Cook Time: 30 minutes    Serves: 4

  • 4 slices of thick cut bacon, diced
  • 1 medium sized onion, finely chopped
  • 3 medium small potatoes, cut into 1/2 inch pieces
  • 3 medium small turnips, cut into 1/2 inch pieces
  • hefty pinch of salt and pepper
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 1 pound salmon fillet, skin removed and cut into 1- inch pieces
  • 1 cup fresh or frozen green beans, cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped dill
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped parsley


  1. Cook the bacon in a heavy bottom cast iron pot or soup pan over medium hight heat until cooked through and lightly crisp. Remove the bacon from the pot and set aside to drain. Discard all but 2 tablespoons of the bacon fat. Add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally until softened, about 5 minutes. Add the potatoes, turnips, salt, pepper, thyme and give the pot another good stir. Add the water and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer until the potatoes and turnips are tender. About 10 minutes.
  2. Add the milk and simmer for about 5 minutes longer. Add the salmon and green beans and simmer until the salmon is just cooked through, about 4-5 minutes.
  3. Stir in the reserved bacon and herbs. Season to taste with additional salt and pepper and serve.


Use this recipe as a guide and adjust measurements and ingredients as necessary

Leave a Reply

2 thoughts on “Autumn Salmon Chowder

  1. Kristie Saumure says:

    This was sublime! We’re pescatarian, so used a bit of smoked salmon as well to get the bacon flavour and also used the crispy lentil recipe from your cookbook as a topper. Thank-you so much. We’ll be making this again and again.

    1. Andrea says:

      Love it!! And yum, the addition of the smoked salmon for the extra salty, smoky flavor you’d get from the bacon is an awesome substitution!

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