South Coast Portuguese Fish Chowder Recipe

Posted by
Rate It!
South Coast Portuguese Fish Chowder
Add your photo!



  1. Heat a 4- to 6-quart heavy pot over medium heat and add the olive oil and bay leaves. As soon as the bay leaves turn brown, add the garlic and cook, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, for 30 seconds or until it is golden. Add the onions, bell pepper, and allspice and saute, stirring occasionally, for about 8 minutes, until the onions and peppers are softened but not browned.
  2. Add the potatoes and stock; if the stock doesn't cover the potatoes, add just enough water to cover them. Turn up the heat, bring to a boil, cover, and cook the potatoes vigorously for about 10 minutes, until they are soft on the outside but still firm in the center.
  3. Reduce the heat to medium, add the tomatoes and sausage, and simmer for 5 minutes. Season the mixture assertively with salt and pepper (you want to almost overseason the chowder at this point, to avoid having to stir it much once the fish is added).
  4. Add the whole fillets and cook for 5 minutes, then remove from the heat, gently stir in the cilantro, and allow the chowder to sit for 10 minutes. (The fish will finish cooking during this time.) If you are not serving the chowder within the hour, let it cool a bit, then refrigerate; cover the chowder after it has chilled completely. Otherwise, let it sit for up to an hour at room temperature, allowing the flavors to meld.
  5. When ready to serve, reheat the chowder over low heat, don't let it boil. Use a slotted spoon to mound the chunks of hake, the chourico, tomatoes, peppers, and potatoes in the center of large soup plates or shallow bowls, and ladle the savory tomato broth over. Sprinkle with the chopped parsley.
  6. Cook's Notes
  7. Chourico has a thick casing, so be sure to remove it before you slice it. Make a small lengthwise slit in the sausage and the casing will peel off easily. The chourico adds a balanced spiciness to this recipe, but it is not overwhelming. If you want to make the chowder even spicier, sprinkle in 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes when you add the onions and bell pepper.
  8. I use canned Italian plum tomatoes packed in juice for this chowder because of their robust flavor. The tomatoes are not added until after the potatoes are fully cooked because otherwise, their acidity causes a reaction that prevents the potatoes from releasing their starch.
  9. Silver hake, a cousin of cod, is smaller and has a slightly more pronounced flavor. It is the hands-down favorite of the Portuguese community but, unlike chourico, hake has never really caught on in the rest of the region. When it is available, it is quite reasonably priced, and it is excellent panfried as well as braised in fish stews and chowder. A note of caution: do not substitute red hake, which fishermen call mud hake. It is flavorful, but the texture is very soft and it doesn't make good chowder. Cod, haddock, and bass are the best substitutes.
Kitchen-Friendly View

Nutrition Facts

Per ServingPer 100 g
Amount Per 1 Serving
Calories 1674.57 Kcal (7011 kJ)
Calories from fat 444.54 Kcal
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 49.39g 76%
Cholesterol 124.92mg 42%
Sodium 10165.59mg 424%
Potassium 5068.84mg 108%
Total Carbs 218.28g 73%
Sugars 6.46g 26%
Dietary Fiber 21.35g 85%
Protein 88.96g 178%
Vitamin C 129.5mg 216%
Vitamin A 0.4mg 14%
Iron 137.3mg 763%
Calcium 344.8mg 34%
Amount Per 100 g
Calories 69.9 Kcal (293 kJ)
Calories from fat 18.56 Kcal
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 2.06g 76%
Cholesterol 5.21mg 42%
Sodium 424.35mg 424%
Potassium 211.59mg 108%
Total Carbs 9.11g 73%
Sugars 0.27g 26%
Dietary Fiber 0.89g 85%
Protein 3.71g 178%
Vitamin C 5.4mg 216%
Iron 5.7mg 763%
Calcium 14.4mg 34%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Find out how many calories should you eat.


  • salty
  • savory
  • bitter
  • sweet
Search recipes
by ingredients
Construct & Analyze
Your Recipe

Recipe Tags

Weightwatchers Points

  • 36.8
  • 43

Good Points

  • low fat,
  • saturated fat free,
  • low cholesterol,
  • sugar free

Bad Points

  • High in Sodium

Share Recipe

Get Your Recipe of Health!
Follow RecipeOfHealth on Facebook!
Scroll to top