Yesterday I was in the mood for soup, despite it being 70 degrees outside. I was going to make a standard veggie potage until my husband suggested I make more of a chowder. After taking a look at what we had in our fridge, followed by a quick stop at Fresh Market, we decided on a potato,corn, and bacon concoction. We used a recipe from Dinosaur Bar-B-Que (a place we really, really want to visit when we move to New York) for guidance. I was extremely pleased with the results – flavorful with a little heat, and very filling. If anything, I might try to thicken it up a bit the next time around, but I took the left-overs to my sister’s house today and she ate it with no complaints. This recipe makes about 6 servings so it’s perfect for a weekend lunch with friends or it can work for dinner with some fresh rolls and a side salad.
1/4 llb bacon, diced
1 cup onion, diced
1 tblsp minced garlic
2 tblsp flour
1 32 ounce container of chicken stock
4 cups peeled, finely diced Russet potato
1 1/2 cups shredded carrot
2 cups corn kernels (fresh or frozen)
1 cup half-and-half
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
Pinch of cayenne pepper
2 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley
Kosher salt and black pepper to taste
Keep about 1/4 cup of fat from the bacon in the pot. Add in the onions and season with salt and pepper. Cook the onions until they are soft and translucent. Then throw in the garlic, cooking it for roughly 1 minute. Sprinkle on the flour, being sure to mix it into the onions and garlic completely. Next, pour in the broth and the diced potatoes. Cover the pot and bring to a boil; then lower the heat and simmer for 15-30 minutes until the potatoes are tender. Then add in the shredded carrots and corn. Cover again and simmer everything 15-30 minutes longer so that the flavors can meld.Finally, stir in the half-and-half. Season the soup with the thyme, cayenne, a bit more salt, and freshly ground black pepper. When you’re ready to eat, throw in the parsley and the bacon bits and give it a few good stirs. I also added some chopped chives and freshly grated Pecorino Romano to my bowl (since I need cheese added to everything…). Cheddar or Gouda could work nicely too. Serve piping hot and enjoy!