Clam chowder and scallops on the first day of summer


I am so happy to finally write that we had the first day of summer here. I did everything I have been waiting for all winter except eat outside! I wasn’t quite ready for that just yet. I did laundry and hung it outside, it smells so wonderful and fresh, I sneezed from my hay fever and took the first antihistamine, I had drinks with our neighbours in the sunshine in the garden and finally, I decided to cook a summery dish.


I felt there has been quite a lot of meat lately so I headed to the fishmonger to get eggs (he has the tastiest ones in town!) and something from the sea. At Easter I saw some scallops there and I did regret not buying some. When I came today they had the scallops again. They are caught locally and looked to good to miss out on!


I got half a pint of clams, cooked and shelled, and then I saw something I haven’t seen there before, smoked mackerel. This was apple wood smoked mackerel and who can resist that? Well I couldn’t and along with some eggs I was quite pleased with my finds and headed home. I wasn’t quite sure how the ingredients would go together so once home I pulled out a chair and sat thinking about it in the sunshine. Having time to do things like that is sometimes the biggest luxury I know. I am happy to say that I decided to use the clams and the scallop as a starter and the mackerel as a main course.

The garden is full of spring, the bees are very busy pollinating the flowers.




The sweetcorn is showing and looking good in the greenhouse.




The flowers are in full bloom 14April_Kamelia


The clams were already cooked and came with some juice and I decided to finally tackle a dish I love and eat every time I go to the USA but have never cooked before, clam chowder.


Clam chowder with scallop

preparation time 10 minutes 

cooking time 20 minutes 

serves 2


  • 2 scallops, with the roe
  • 1/2 pint cooked clams
  • 1 dl or 1/2 cup of water
  • 1 dl or 1/2 cup of light cream
  • 1-2 medium firm potato
  • 1.2 onion
  • 1 celery stalk
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 2 rashes of bacon
  • 4 sprigs of lemon thyme

Cut the bacon in to thin strips. Grate the onion, garlic and celery. Fry the bacon in a pan, add a little oil and and it just starts to crisp up, peel and cut the potatoes in to cubes and add them together with the grated garlic, onion and celery. Let fry for a few minutes and add water and let simmer for 10 minutes.


Whilst the chowder is cooking clean the scallops, separate the roe from the scallop and cut it free from the shell.




Heat butter and oil in a frying pan and fry the scallops until they are caramelized on the outside on the top and the bottom sides. Set aside until you are ready to serve.


Test the potatoes, they need to be just cooked through, add the clams and cream and bring to a boil. Taste with salt and pepper.

Spoon up the chowder, slice the scallops and serve with the roe.




The chowder was rich but still light and I think we could easily have eaten more of it. The scallop was just as amazing as it looked and the roe delicious.


I skinned and de boned the mackerel. I mixed buttermilk with some crushed garlic, it is a lovely combination and garlic goes so well with anything from the sea. I steamed spinach and grated kohlrabi. I used the fine side of the grater for a raw beetroot and a piece of ginger. I mixed it with the juice of a blood orange. Finally I boiled potatoes and tossed them with chopped parsley.


Blood orange 14April_BloodOrange


Mackerel dinner 14April_MackerelDinner1


It was a great meal and as always I did think we should eat fish more often, it is so delicious.


I have added this to Recipe of the Week, hosted by Emily, have a look at her blog, A Mummy Too, it is full of interesting recipes and things about life!








7 Responses to “Clam chowder and scallops on the first day of summer”
  1. Loretta says:

    It looks so fresh and summery Petra. Great job! Isn’t it wonderful when the weather is gorgeous outside? We are experiencing similar temps (slightly warmer) on the east coast of the USA. My folks live in England, and I have a sis coming to visit me from there next week. I was hoping the weather would be much warmer for her than England, but for some reason this year it is not, our spring started much later. Love all your activity in the garden too 🙂

    • petra08 says:

      hi Loretta
      Sunshine and a little warm weather makes all the difference! I feel like eating lighter food and I am out in the greenhouse every day checking up on the seeds to see what has come through! I can’t wait to plant the veggies out and watch them grow! Fingers crossed for a long and lovely summer! 🙂

  2. andy says:

    What beautiful clicks !! ❤

  3. You are a gourmet chef my friend. This is one beautiful dish. I loved that you were able to sit outside and have your plan come together. That is a luxury that I enjoy too.

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