Monday, September 19, 2011

Corn Chowder

A big fan of soups, especially corn chowder, I decided to take advantage of the late-summer sweet corn and make a batch on a quiet evening. While it requires a good deal of veggies, it’s very simple to make (aren’t most soups?) and consistently treats my taste buds.
First, I started out with my veggies: corn (6 ears), 4 stalks of celery, 2 potatoes, a red bell pepper, an onion and 2 jalapenos. 
 I cut them all up into uniform little pieces and got them ready for the pot. 
 Meantime, I simmered the corn cobs in store-bought veggie stock to give it a deeper corn flavor and that did the trick. 
Next, I sautéed bacon in the soup pot and drained off the excess grease (yuck!). 
 Then, added the veggies – everything but the corn and potatoes – and let that soften for about 5-7 minutes. After they were simmering and soft, I added the corn and potatoes, in addition to a clove of garlic, a bay leaf, rosemary and thyme (and of course, salt & pepper).
After the flavors had a chance to marry, I poured in the broth (corn cob and all) and let that simmer for about a half hour (with the top on). I also added a pinch of cayenne, as a little bite is nice with this soup. 
 Once it was all simmered up, I removed the corn cobs and herbs. 
 Then, I went to work with the immersion blender and brought the soup to a nice, velvety texture. 
 The result was a sweet and spicy soup, as the corn lends a great, fresh, summery taste and the jalapeno (and cayenne) provides that fun and unexpected kick. 
 It’s been a much enjoyed lunch for work this week and I may have to make an extra batch before the summer comes to a close. 

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