California Avocado Seafood Chowder

california avocado seafood chowder
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Is your soup menu a snooze? Consider this distinctive seafood chowder in which California avocados act as a rich and colorful wake-up call.


1 lb. mussels
1⁄2 cup dry white wine
8 oz. chopped onion
2 tbsp. unsalted butter
1 tbsp. ground cumin
4 large cloves garlic, finely chopped
2 lb. purple or red-skinned potatoes, peeled, cut in 1⁄2-in. dice
3 cups water
1 qt. milk
1 cup heavy cream
1 qt. corn kernels, fresh or frozen
1 lb. tomatoes, peeled, seeded, and diced
4 California avocados cut in 1⁄2-in. dice
2 lb. sea scallops, sliced in 1⁄4-in. medallions
6 tbsp. chopped cilantro
Cilantro sprigs, as needed


1. Steam mussels covered in wine until just open, about 4 min.

2. Remove mussels with a slotted spoon; reserve in shells. Strain remaining liquid through an extra-fine sieve; reserve.

3. Sauté onion in butter until soft, about 5 min. Stir in cumin and garlic. Cook, stirring, until aromatic, about 2 min.

4. Stir in reserved mussel liquid and potatoes. Add water. Bring to a boil; reduce to a
simmer. Cook, covered, until potatoes are barely tender, about 5 min.

5. Stir in milk, cream, corn, and tomatoes; bring to a simmer (do not boil). Cook, covered, 5 min.

6. Stir in avocado and scallops; cover. Remove from heat; let stand, covered, 4 min. Pour into airtight storage container and chill.

7. Per order, heat 11⁄2 cups chowder; stir in 1⁄2 tbsp. cilantro. Pour into shallow soup plate. Top with three mussels and garnish with cilantro sprig.

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