It’s getting cold in Chicago. While I’ve somehow resisted actually turning on the heat in my house, it’s time for the comfort foods. Last week, I made my chicken stew with biscuits for the first time since the thermometer went over fifty degrees last spring. And then I made another comfort food dish. I love soup. I love my crock pot. And so I got creative. I created an oh so yummy soup that I altered to make dairy free for Little Miss but that can absolutely be full of dairy if you choose.
Served with a slice of fresh bread from the oven – I’m back to baking almost a small loaf a day, another recipe I need to share soon since it’s so low maintenance – and the wee ones were in heaven. Mister Man ate three bowls of it. This was definitely a winner, and I have all the ingredients except potatoes in my house now to make another batch. Yum!
Potato Corn Chowder
6 slices bacon, chopped
2 carrots, diced
2 ribs celery, diced
1 onion, diced
1/3 c flour
3 c potatoes, diced
4 c chicken stock
1/2 t Worchestershire
1 c milk (or rice milk for us)
3 c frozen sweet corn
Cook up your bacon in a pan. I suggest cutting the bacon before you cook it, as it’s easier to get an even browning that way – at least for me. Start your bacon in a cold pan, and cook until it’s starting to crisp up, then remove the bacon – but leave the grease – and set it aside until you’re ready to serve.
Add the diced carrot and celery to the hot pan with the bacon grease (note: I use lean center cut bacon, so I don’t end up with tons and tons of grease, but if you use “standard” bacon, you may need to scoop out some of the grease). Cook for five minutes or so. Add the onion and continue to cook another ten minutes or so until the carrots and celery start to carmelize a bit, stirring periodically. Add the flour, and stir until it’s coated everything. Cook with the flour for two to three minutes to cook out the raw taste of the flour.
Add the four cups of chicken stock to your crock pot. Add the diced potatoes – note that I used red and purple potatoes because I had them on hand, but usually I would use red or fingerling potatoes because I like them best, but russets work just fine, too. Add the veggies from the pan and stir to combine. Add the Worchestershire sauce, and cover the crock pot. Cook on low for six hours or high for three to four hours.
Then add the milk, and stir. Cover the crock pot again and cook for another half hour to hour. Because I like to have some potato texture, I pull out some of the potatoes at this time, but it isn’t necessary. Puree some or all of the soup to help it thicken further. I use my immersion blender in the crock pot. If you don’t have one, you can use your standard blender, but be careful to not fill it more than one-third full with a hot liquid and use a kitchen towel to hold the top on. Heat expands and can blow the top off if you don’t!
Once it’s pureed, add the corn. Let the soup come to temperature again (I put frozen corn in, so it needs to reheat another ten or so minutes) and serve with the bacon strewn atop the chowder in bowls.
Great. I’m hungry. Again.
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