Lightened up salmon chowder featuring corn, red-skin potatoes, avocado, and Southwestern spices with loads of heart-healthy fat
In an 8- or 10-inch skillet, bring 1 cup water to boiling over medium-high heat. Add the salmon, cover, return to a boil, then reduce heat to medium-low. Simmer for about 7 minutes or until the fish flakes easily with a fork. (Make sure the water continues to bubble; if it doesn't, increase the heat.) Remove from heat.
Place the corn in a mesh strainer and run cold water over it. Let it drain and continue thawing while you proceed with the recipe.
In a 3 1/2-quart saucepan or small stockpot, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the bell pepper and white parts of scallions. Cook, stirring frequently, until the vegetables begin to soften. Combine the flour, salt, pepper, cayenne, and chili powder in a small bowl. Add the flour mixture to the saucepan and stir for an additional 1 minute or until flour is well incorporated.
Gradually stir in the clam juice and broth, scraping up the bits from the bottom of the pan. Add the potatoes, cover, and bring the mixture to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer, stirring occasionally, for about 15 minutes or until the potatoes are tender.
Stir the corn in the strainer to break it up. Add the milk and corn to the saucepan, increase the heat to medium, and cook for an additional 2 minutes.
Remove the salmon from the skillet and flake it with a fork. Gently stir it into the chowder and let it heat through.
Spoon the chowder into 4 serving bowls and top with the green parts of the scallions and the avocado. Serve with a squeeze of lime juice.
Don't chop the avocado until just before serving or it will turn brown.
If you don't have any clam juice, skip it and use 2 cups broth instead.
Make-Ahead Tip: Cook the salmon (step 1) and make the chowder base (steps 2 through 5). Cool both and refrigerate separately. When you're ready to eat, flake the salmon and combine it with the chowder in a saucepan. Heat until warm, then serve with scallions, chopped avocado, and lime juice.