Spicy Corn Chowder with Chèvre

 

We’ll make the inaugural post all about corn chowder. My buddy, Lou, sent me this recipe from an old Mexican cookbook. I have no clue what the book is called and I’m not ashamed to admit it because Mr. google didn’t know either. So there.

I usually make this with fresh corn but hey, it’s New England, and fresh corn is only around a few months of the year. In a pinch, I’ll use canned corn. Yep, you read that right. Canned corn. It’s the tastiest thing to come in a can, EVER. If you need to go ghetto and use canned corn, make sure it’s the Green Giant niblets. Anything else is junk…..this, coming from a girl who just admitted she loves canned corn.

Spicy Corn Chowder with Chèvre

(1 quart or 4 servings)

Ingredients:

3 large ears of corn (or 3 cups frozen corn, defrosted….or Amy’s favorite, 3 cups of canned corn)

4 tablespoons unsalted butter

1/2 medium onion, finely chopped

2 cloves of garlic, peeled and minced

1 1/2 tablespoons corn starch

2 cups milk

2 fresh poblano chilies

1 cup heavy cream

Salt to taste (and you’re going to need A LOT of salt but just keep tasting)

Chèvre (goat cheese) or feta and Scallions

Put on your seatbelt. Here we go…..

Prepare the corn (canned or frozen corn peeps, pay no attention to the following)….. Remove the husks (duh), get a deep pot and line the bottom with paper towels. You will thank me later for this step because otherwise, you’ll be trying to catch flying kernels. Not pretty. Stand the ear of corn up, in the deep pot, and strip off the kernels with a sharp knife. Once you have all the kernels removed, go back over the ear of corn with the backside of your knife, to get all the good milky stuff.

Heat half the butter in a skillet, over medium heat. Add the onion and fry until soft (about 7-10 minutes). Stir in the garlic and cook for a couple of minutes. Scrape the mixture into a blender or food processor, along with the corn, corn starch and a 1/4 cup of water. Process until smooth.

Melt the remaining butter in the skillet and add the corn puree. Stir constantly until it’s really thick (around 4-5 minutes).

Whisk in the milk, partially cover and let it simmer for 15 minutes (medium-low). Be sure to give it a stir, occasionally.

Now comes the messy part. I’d suggest cheese cloth for best results but a fine strainer works well. Strain the soup, rinse the pan and return the soup to the pan. Stir in the diced poblano and cream. Season with salt (trust me when I tell you it will require a lot of salt….like maybe a quarter of a cup? Just keep tasting as you add salt). Let it hang for 10 minutes or so.

When it’s finished, pull out some pretty bowls, cut up some Chevre or feta, throw it on top along with dice scallions for garnish.

Thanks to Lisa and Lou for introducing me to the best soup ever (and to the mexican person who wrote the cookbook.) 🙂

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