Fish Soup Recipe is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of the Norwegian Seafood Council. All opinions are 100% my own!
This Norwegian Fish Soup recipe (fiskesuppe) is a low carb and gluten-free adaptation of the classic, a one pot salmon chowder prepared in less than 30 minutes. It’s ideal for those chilly, busy days! Plus, learn why you should prefer Norwegian farmed salmon, its sustainable seafood industry, and much more.
A couple of weeks ago I traveled to Norway to learn on-site all about its seafood and benefits, the great Norwegian fish industry, and their commitment to sustainability and preserving the environment.
Without a doubt, this trip changed my perspective for the better, and has already impacted the way that I eat every day. I hope that it will do the same for you, too!
I visited the cities of Alta, Tromso, and Oslo, and would love to share with you some of the things that I learned there.
SEAFOOD FROM NORWAY
The Norwegian seafood industry is a global leader in aquaculture. It follows sustainable farming methods and has a firm commitment to the environment.
Among its many products are salmon, cod, mackerel, halibut, red king crab, prawns, and many others.
I had the chance to taste each one of them in Norway, and was captivated by how clean and fresh-tasting they all are.
When it comes to one of America’s favorite fish, salmon, here is what you need to know before buying salmon and making our fish soup recipe (fiskesuppe).
DIFFERENCES BETWEEN FARMED SALMON VS. WILD
One thing that I will never forget is that not all farmed salmon are raised equal! Origin matters!!!
Why? Because some farmed salmon are raised on land, which demands more resources and does not always follow best practices.
In contrast, Norwegian farmed salmon are cultured in ocean pens in the cold, clear waters of Norway, following strict practices and regulations.
To give salmon sufficient swimming space, ocean net pens contain only 2.5% fish to 97.5% water. From roe to a mature fish may take up to 3 years.
This means that the salmon are given the time, space and opportunity to fully mature.
And that’s not all! They are fed with an all-natural diet composed of both vegetable and marine raw material (non-GMO). Norwegian salmon is rich in protein, vitamins A, D, B12, antioxidants, and Omega-3s.
The use of antibiotics is zero, and no color is added to the fish. In addition, hygiene in the processing plants is a strict priority, which I had the chance to see with my own eyes.
For me, one of the highlights was finding out that aquaculture harvesting facilities are rotated in order to give time for nature to recover.
All the above make farmed salmon from Norway not only a safe and healthy product for consumers, but also eco-friendly!
On the other hand, wild salmon may not receive enough nutrients out in the open sea and worse, may even present parasitic worms that can affect your health. Wild salmon also costs more than farmed salmon.
So the next time you go shopping at Costco, Walmart, HEB, or other local markets, ask for Norwegian salmon specifically. I actually did that a few days ago!
SALMON PROCESSING PLANT
After a presentation about aquaculture at Grieg Seafood in Alta, Norway we visited their processing plant.
When ready for harvest, farmed salmon are taken to a separate tank in the sea where a suction tube transports them to the facility.
Within the plant, the salmon move along on a conveyer belt where they receive an anesthetizing shock, are cut close to the head, and when already dead are allowed to bleed for 20 minutes.
Next, workers cut the salmon open, clean them, and place them into boxes with ice. And finally, the boxes are separated by a robot machine for shipping to different destinations.
At the end of the day, the facility receives cleaning and sanitizing treatments in order to prevent bacterial contamination.
SEAFOOD NUTRITION & BENEFITS
At the University of Tromso and also the Norwegian Seafood Research Fund in Oslo, my group and I learned about seafood nutrition and its benefits.
Seafood, in general terms, is a high quality protein that is packed with nutrients — vitamins and minerals (like vitamin A, B6, B12, C, D, selenium, and iodine), as well as omega-3 fatty acids.
It has benefits from childhood all the way to old age, including the facts that it:
- Boosts immunity and has anti-inflammatory properties
- Improves heart health and balances blood pressure
- Is great for brain function and cognition
- May be good for mental health
- Helps with vision
- Improves bone health and reduces the risk of osteoporosis
- The consumption of lean fish (cod, haddock, halibut) may reduce risk for type 2 diabetes
But in order to gain the health benefits, adults need to eat 7-8 ounces of seafood per week.
Pregnant and lactating women should consume more (about 8-12 ounces per week) because it helps development of the fetal brain and eyes.
Kids should aim for once to twice a week, depending on their age and calorie intake.
SEAFOOD AND THE ENVIRONMENT
Ocean-farmed salmon has a much lower carbon footprint than pork or beef.
The volume of feed needed to raise 1 lb of Norwegian salmon is just 1.1 lb of feed… while the feed to raise 1 lb of pork is 3 times more, and that of beef 8 times more.
The salmon feed is about 70% plant-based and 30% from marine ingredients.
Moreover, any site that has been used for salmon farming receives a mandatory rest period before a new farming cycle can begin.
When the mature fish leave the pen for processing, the pen is left empty for two months before the next generation of salmon can grow up there.
HOW TO MAKE NORWEGIAN FISH SOUP RECIPE (FISKESUPPE)
This low carb/GF fish soup recipe is easy to prepare!
First, heat a large pot over medium heat. Add oil and cook onion and leek for about 3-4 minutes.
Then, add garlic and cook for about 1 minute, stirring every now and then. Do not let brown! Transfer about half of the veggies to the blender; reserve.
Next, add broth and cauliflower to the pot and let cook over high heat for about 8-10 minutes or until tender. Transfer all the cauliflower and 1 cup of the broth to the blender. Add salt, pepper, cayenne pepper, and heavy cream. Blend with half of the reserved cooked veggies until smooth. Pour back into the pot.
Add the fish and carrots. Let cook over medium-high heat for about 5-6 minutes. Remove pot from the heat and stir in lemon juice.
Last, garnish fish soup with fresh dill or chives. Serve by itself or with a hard-crusted bread.
OTHER SEAFOOD DISHES
Norwegian Fish Soup Recipe (Fiskesuppe)
- 2 TBSP olive oil
- 1 white or yellow onion small diced
- 1 cup leek stalk (1 green leaf chopped and 1 cup white stalk sliced)
- 4 garlic cloves minced
- 4 cups fish broth or stock
- 1 lb cauliflower frozen or fresh
- salt and pepper to taste (about 1 and 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper)
- 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 1 lb salmon skinless and cut into chunks
- 1 carrot peeled and cut into small chunks (skip if on a KETO diet)
- 1 lemon juiced
- 1-2 TBSP fresh dill or chives chopped
- Heat a large pot over medium heat. Add oil and cook onion and leek for about 3-4 minutes. Then add garlic and cook for about 1 minute, stirring every now and then. Do not let brown! Transfer about half of the veggies to a blender cup; reserve.
- Add broth and cauliflower to the pot and let cook over high heat for about 8-10 minutes or until tender. Transfer all the cauliflower and about 1 cup of the broth to the blender with salt, pepper, cayenne, and heavy cream. Blend with half of the reserved cooked veggies until smooth. Pour back into the pot.
- Add the fish and carrots. Let cook over medium-high heat for about 5-6 minutes. Remove pot from the heat and stir in lemon juice. Garnish top of soup with fresh dill or chives. Serve fish soup by itself or with a hard-crusted bread.