The chowder report

Like everyone else in the Western world, Iris loves that Narnia Rap. She goes around saying things like “pack it up NICE” and “mack on some cupcakes.” Tonight at bedtime…

> **Laurie:** Yo, Iris, what’s crackin’?

> **Iris:** Eggs.

I made a big pot of New England fish chowder. I have got to remember to halve these Jasper recipes, because I think we ate a quarter of the chowder.

The fishmonger was able to hook me up with what I needed, although it wasn’t exactly as I envisioned it. I imagined that maybe I’d buy a few whole cod and the guy would unsheathe his scimitar and fillet them, and I’d get the fillets and some fish carcasses that would look exactly like what cats eat in comic strips: a head and tail fin with a skeleton in between. Oh, and the head would have X’s for eyes.

As it turns out, though, they didn’t have any whole cod around, so I got a bunch of cod fillets and my pick of the scraps bucket. Probably 90% of what they sell at a typical Seattle fish market is salmon and halibut, so the only whitefish scraps they had were halibut. I took a big, fleshy piece that was once behind the fish’s head, and I think they charged me three bucks for it. It was hard to cut up, but it ended up making a pretty good fish stock.

I’m not sure what I was expecting, but the word I’d use to describe the fish chowder is “mild.” The best part was the salt pork cracklings and the toasted common crackers. Iris ate several crackers and a lot of broth. At one point she spooned some broth onto some fish bites on her plate and said, “Putting some fish stock on those.” Then she ate them.

**A clarification.** In yesterday’s baby food post, when I said:

> I’ll admit that when Iris is eating yogurt, I usually put the tray on to avoid a pants-change right after breakfast.

I meant her pants, not mine. Hope this clears things up.

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