Fall is here and as much as I love the beach, I love Fall equally. For one thing, the NY Yankees are in the playoffs, then there’s football, hockey, bonfires, apple picking, pumpkin everything, and soup! I just love making food when the weather gets a nip in the air. Something about a nice bowl of soup on a cool day to really nourish body, mind, and soul! Truly!
Corn chowder is one of those things that is so subjective from chef to chef. Everyone has a twist to make it theirs, and basically it all boils down to technique, ( no pun intended) and fresh ingredients. Some add seafood and make it a fish/corn chowder. Others use strictly cream and no stock, some make it with yellow corn or a variation of white and yellow. I could go on for days! My Harvest Corn Chowder is chock full of veggies, bacon, white corn fresh off the cob, and a puree of corn, corn milk, heavy cream, and chicken stock. To me this is what a good chowder begs for. Some smokiness from the bacon, potatoes for substance, the sweet farm grown corn, and the richness from the heavy cream. This is not one of your healthy soups but it is hearty, and this in it of itself is a meal. Throw in some nice crusty Italian bread, or a hearty multi-grain Artisan Boule, and you are good to go.
This is perfection, Fresh corn is best, yellow or white, I prefer the white but you do you! You can totally make this vegan if you puree more corn, add in soy milk or just use the corn puree with some of the potatoes to thicken this up, and omit the bacon (obvi) and use vegetable stock in place of the chicken stock.
I hope you give this Harvest Corn Chowder a try. It really is the perfect bowl of comfort when the leaves start falling, but honestly this is good all year round.
The veg… dice all. 2 -3 each depending on size is perfect.
Cut the leek into half-moon shape, and shish in clean water, this removes any dirt and debris that hide in the leaves of the leeks from growing under the soil. I love leeks with potatoes they are mild and sweet and just have an infinity for one another! Kind of like me and my fireman! xo
Sautee the bacon in a Dutch oven over medium high heat. Let it render its fat and do its thing until crisp. Set aside on paper towel lined plate.
I like to start sautéing the leeks first then add in the rest of the veg except the corn. It just my thing. This was the bacon fat and butter mixed in with some salt, cracked black pepper and fresh thyme from my garden. There are two schools of thought when it comes to chowder, some prefer the veg pureed for a smoother presentation, and others such as myself enjoy the veggies in my chowder. To me if I have something to chew it feels substantial to me and keeps me fuller longer, but that is entirely up to you!
This is the cream and broth coming to a nice boil. The potatoes will begin to break down a bit but still stay intact. This will do its thing for at least 15 minutes.
This is starting to thicken up nicely and you can add in the corn. Make certain to reserve one ear and 1/2 cup of the heavy cream to be part of the puree you will add in at the very end. Reduce to a simmer, and let this go for another 10-15 minutes to meld flavors, and thicken up!
Why does this remind me of some far off vortex of pureness? YES this is the madness inside my head…back to the puree. This what the consistency should be of the puree. If it seems thin add some more corn kernels. Add this in after the corn has been simmering in the chowder for at least 15 minutes. Let it go another 3-5 minutes to thicken. Then serve immediately with a drizzle of EVOO, crumbled reserved bacon, chopped fresh chives, and shredded cheddar cheese if desired. I love my antique soup tureen. Flea Markets are great for finds like this. I have a thing for Haviland Vintage Tureens. Actually, vintage bakeware and serve-ware, in general to be honest!
Harvest Corn Chowder
The perfect comfort soup, hearty, full of flavor, a blend of smoky, creamy, goodness with a touch of sweetness from the corn, it's sheer perfection in a chowder!
- Fresh corn works best for this recipe. You can cut calories by using half heavy cream, half fat-free half and half.
- If using a leek as the recipe indicates, you will want to strip the leek of the green top, cut off the bottom hair-like fibers, then take a sharp knife and slice the leek lengthwise in half. Dice into half-moon pieces, then fill a large bowl with cold water. Shish the leeks in the water to release any dirt and debris that comes from the leeks being grown deep in the soil. Take a strainer and pull-out the leeks, careful not to upset the debris that has fallen to the bottom of the bowl, dry with a paper towel, then use as directed.
Credit: CrazySexySavor.com/Susan Mangieri-Maurath
- 5 large ears of white or yellow corn (reserve one ear for pureeing with 1/2 cup of heavy cream
- 2 cups of heavy cream divided
- 5 strips of bacon cut into strips
- 2 large carrots diced
- 1 small leek cleaned and rinsed (see note)
- 2 stalks of celery diced
- 1 clove of garlic minced
- 2 large baking potatoes, peeled and diced
- 1 32 oz. container of chicken stock
- 1 tbsp. of fresh thyme or 1 tsp. of dried thyme
- Pinch of cayenne
- Kosher salt and cracked black pepper to taste
- fresh chopped chives, cheddar cheese, and EVOO for drizzling on top (optional)
- In a large Dutch oven, begin to render sliced bacon over medium high heat. Stir frequently to keep bacon from burning. When bacon is cooked, remove to paper towel lined plate. Reserve for garnish later. In same pot, with all that precious liquid gold (bacon fat), add in a tablespoon of unsalted butter, add in the leeks and sauté until soft about three to four minutes, add in carrots celery, and potatoes, saute until soft another three to four minutes, if you need to add EVOO add a tiny bit. It depends on the fat content of the bacon you use. I keep reserved bacon grease on my counter for such a thing, but if you do not, add in some EVOO. Add in minced garlic and sauté a minute more.
- While the veg are sautéing, in a large bowl, using a sharp knife begin to cut lengthwise down the cobs of corn to remove the kernels, scrape down the cob to ensure you get plenty of the white corn milk that will help thicken and flavor the chowder.
- Sprinkle the flour over the veg and mix to cook off the flour about three minutes. Add in salt, pepper, thyme and a pinch of cayenne for some nice soft heat! Add in chicken broth. Bring to a boil, then let simmer gently for about 15 minutes. After this time add in about 1 1/2 cups of the heavy cream and bring soup up to a boil. Continue cooking the soup at a boil for at least 10 minutes. You want to thicken the soup and breakdown some of the potatoes, by doing this you will begin to have your chowder base. While the chowder is boiling, in a Ninja Blender or similar, add in the reserved one cob worth of kernels, about 1/2 cup of kernels. Puree until smooth and thick. Add in more kernels if needed, as you want the puree thick.
- When the chowder has boiled for at least 10 minutes, add in the corn and let simmer for about 10-15 minutes to let the corn begin to soften slightly. After about 15 minutes add in the corn/heavy cream puree. Mix well to combine. Let simmer three more minutes before serving.
- Serve topping with reserved cooked, crumbled bacon, fresh chopped chives, and a drizzle of EVOO. My kidlets love to top theirs with shredded cheddar cheese. YUM!!! Devour!!
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