Corn Chowder

13 Aug

Corn Chowder

I know most people aren’t looking to make soup in the middle of August, but it was hard to pass up this recipe — because we found ourselves with a 8 ears of corn that we needed to eat. And believe it or not, I’m somewhat convinced that the best time to make this soup is during the summer when fresh corn is easy to find. This chowder is yummy with fresh bread and believe it or not, it is light enough to eat on a summer night.


Corn Chowder

INGREDIENTS
8 ears corn, husks and silk removed
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 onion, chopped fine
6 slices bacon, halved lengthwise then cut into 1/4 inch pieces
2 teaspoons minced fresh thyme
Salt and pepper
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
5 cups water
3/4 – 1 pound red potatoes, cut into 1/2 inch pieces
1 cup half-and-half
Sugar
3 tablespoons chopped fresh basil

DIRECTIONS

  1. Using a sharp knife, cut kernels from corn cobs — make sure not to cut too deeply and only cut the part of the kernel sticking out of the cob. Transfer to a bowl and set aside (you should have 5 to 6 cups of kernels).
  2. Holding cobs over another bowl, use the back of a butter knife or vegetable peeler to scrape any remaining pulp on cobs into the bowl (you should have 2 to 2 1/2 cups pulp). Transfer the pulp to center of a clean kitchen towel set in a medium bowl. Wrap towel tightly around pulp and squeeze out the milky corn juice until dry. Discard the remaining pulp in towel and set corn juice aside (you should have about 2/3 cup juice).
  3. Melt 3 tablespoons of butter in a Dutch oven over medium heat. Add onion, bacon, thyme, 2 teaspoons salt, and 1 teaspoon pepper to the pot. Cook for 8-10 minutes until onion is softened and edges are beginning to turn brown. Stir in flour and cook, stirring constantly, for another 2 minutes. Gradually add water and bring to boil; mix thoroughly. Add corn kernels and potatoes and bring the soup to a simmer. Reduce heat to medium-low and continue to cook until the potatoes have softened, about 15 to 18 minutes.
  4. Process 2 cups chowder in a blender for 1-2 minutes until the mixture is very smooth (there should be no chunks of vegetables remaining). Return puree to chowder; add half-and-half and bring soup to a simmer. Remove pot from heat and stir in reserved corn juice. Season to taste with salt, pepper, and up to 1 tablespoon sugar if desired. Sprinkle with basil and serve.

¬†Adapted from America’s Test Kitchen

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