In a large Dutch oven, melt the butter and then saute the onions and celery over medium heat, allow to soften, about minutes. Add the potato and add only enough chicken broth (or water) to barely cover. Cook until the potato is just barely tender. Add the basil, oregano, celery salt, pepper, salt, paprika and Tabasco sauce.
Layer the fish and shellfish on top. Add just enough chicken broth (or water) to cover. Cook only until fish barely flakes.
Add the cream, and then fill the pot with the milk. If you think you’re going to run out of room in the pot, skimp on the milk, not the cream.
Allow the chowder to warm through. Keep on a bare simmer until serving or refrigerate and slowly heat up before serving.
Notes & Tips:.
Movita Boucoup recommends using at least two, 1/2 pound of each seafood selection in addition to the white fish. She strongly recommends scallops and lobster. Don’t use any fish with a dominant flavour such as salmon, sardines, clams, etc.
Water is traditionally used in chowders such as this and will taste just fine if you opt for that instead of broth. If using broth, it is recommended using a sodium reduced variety. If you're using canned and don't have enough, you can make up the difference with water. The chicken broth adds just a bit of richness to the chowder.
Chowder is best on the second day, so when entertaining, make it the day before.
To rewarm, put the pot on low and allow 45 minutes it to heat through. Do not allow the chowder to boil; low heat is key.
You will notice that the spices seem to sit on top of the chowder. When you serve, give a little stir and then scoop; just the right amount of spice will come up with the ladle.