Sea Chowder with Shiitake Bacon Recipe

Give the famous New England clam chowder a vegan transformation with this sea chowder with shiitake bacon recipe.

From "Ocean Green"
May 2018

  • This recipe features caramelized mushrooms that act as bacon for this sea chowder.
    Photo by Lisette Kreischer
  • “Ocean Greens” by Lisette Kreischer and Marcel Schuttelaar brings together 50 recipes to make eating seaweed exciting and delicious.
    Photo by Lisette Kreischer

Yield: 4 servings

Ocean Greens (The Experiment, 2016) by Lisette Kreischer and Marcel Schuttelaar shows food-enthusiasts how they can deliciously incorporate seaweed into their daily diet. Kreischer and Schuttelaar educate their readers on the many benefits of eating seaweed, and offer dozens of recipes to make eating seaweed enjoyable. The following excerpt is their recipe for sea chowder with shiitake bacon.

Sea-based chowders are a New England staple. Now, vegans can enjoy this slightly sweet, perfectly salty treat, too. This chowder uses sweet and summery corn, and its creaminess comes from potatoes. The saltiness is courtesy of a true king of the sea: kombu. The shiitake bacon with its intense, savory flavor tops it all off.


Sea Chowder

• Olive oil for sautéing
• 1 large white onion, finely chopped
• 3 garlic cloves, minced
• 1 small red chile pepper, seeded and minced
• 3-1/2 cups (500 grams) fresh corn kernels (from about 2 ears)
• 3 medium potatoes, peeled and cubed
• 1 tsp. thyme
• 2 bay leaves
• 5-1/4 cups (1.25 liters) water
• 0.25 ounce (7 grams) dried kombu
• Fine sea salt and freshly ground pepper

Shiitake Bacon

• Olive oil for sautéing
• 7 ounces (200 grams) shiitake mushrooms, wiped clean and thinly sliced
• 2 tbsp. soy sauce
• 1 heaping teaspoon smoked paprika (pimentón)
• 2 to 3 tsp. maple syrup


• Fresh herbs, to taste (dill weed, parsley, rosemary, cilantro, etc.)


1. To make the sea chowder, heat a splash of olive oil in a stockpot. Sauté the onion until golden brown, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and the chili pepper and cook for 3 more minutes. Add the corn, potatoes, thyme, and bay leaves. Stir for a couple of minutes. Add the water and kombu. Bring to a boil and lower to a simmer for 20 minutes, the pot partially covered with a lid.

2. To make the shiitake bacon, heat a splash of oil in a skillet and sauté the shiitakes until golden brown all around. Douse with the soy sauce and stir, allowing the shiitake mushrooms to fully absorb the liquid. Sprinkle with smoked paprika and the maple syrup. Stir thoroughly and allow the mushrooms to caramelize (this process goes quickly, so be careful). Remove from the heat.

3. Remove the kombu from the soup. Cook for another 5 minutes, uncovered. Remove from the heat. Scoop out the bay leaves. Puree the soup with a stand or immersion blender until completely smooth. Season with sea salt and pepper.

4. Serve in bowls together with the shiitake bacon and garnish with fresh herbs.

More from: Ocean Greens

Chocolate, Raspberry, and Seaweed Cake Recipe
Squash and Seaweed Pancake Recipe

Recipe from Ocean Greens: Explore the World of Edible Seaweed and Sea Vegetables by Lisette Kreischer and Marcel Schuttelaar. © Kosmos Uitgevers Utrecht/Antwerpen 2015, 2016. Translation © Maria M. Reimer and Victor Verbeck, 2016. Reprinted by permission of the publisher, The Experiment. Available wherever books are sold.

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