10 August 2010

Late Summer Corn Chowder

Pisum sativum; Sweet Corn

Born and raised in a farming family, there are 2 types of sweet corn; "not enough" and "too much"! Every year, we wait for the first glossy kernels to ripen and explode in your mouth with the first bite! We are impatient and eat them a bit too young, but it matters not, because they are so delicious! At the end of the season, we are taking those golden stalks for granted and we're PICKY! "This is overripe", "this is too chewy", "are we having sweet corn again?!", "not as sweet as last weeks'" and on it goes. We are cutting the stuff off of the cobs like no tomorrow and running out of ziploc bags and vacuum sealer bags. The counters are sticky, and you can't seem to get every little cut kernel swept off the floor. However, those fat little bags of steamy corn will remind us of summer come January...and you can't just throw it away!

With a rain storm brewing last evening, I made my favorite corn chowder. Rich, thick, packed with flavor and garnished with cheese! It was a masterpiece that I'd like to share with you! I actually saved about 3 days worth of leftover sweet corn just for the soup, so no waste! I hope you enjoy as much as we did! I served my soup with toasted bagels layered with a bit of cream cheese and a thick slice of fresh tomato! Late Summer....

10 ears of sweet corn blanched and cut from cob
1 1/2 medium sweet white onions, chopped
1 pound baby red potatoes, washed and cut into 1/2 inch cubes
1/2 pound of bacon, cut into 1 inch pieces
3 Tablespoons good quality olive oil
1/2 cup all purpose flour
1/4 cup butter
8 cups chicken stock
1 1/2 cups heavy cream
1 Tablespoon fresh snipped chives
1 teaspoon fresh thyme, snipped
1 teaspoon fresh parsley, snipped
1/2 pound of good quality cheddar cheese

In a large dutch oven, brown bacon in olive oil until crispy. Remove bacon and add fresh onions and saute over medium heat until translucent and soft. Add flour and butter and cook about 3 minutes, stirring constantly. Add stock and potatoes and let cook about 15 minutes until potatoes are fork tender. Add sweet corn, herbs and heavy cream and reduce heat to simmer about 10 minutes or until soup has thickened. Garnish with shredded Irish cheddar cheese from The Boulevard Market and bacon.

This is a rather large batch, but you can share with a friend or have leftovers! I have also thrown in a small container of leftover cooked rice and that was fabulous! All of my produce is compliments of Prochaska Farms...we trade cheese and labor for vegetables and pick up truck usage!

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