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Creamy Roasted Corn Chowder

Servings 12 bowls

Ingredients

  • 8 ears of fresh corn or 4 cups of frozen corn
  • 3 Tbl butter
  • 1 can of creamed corn * the old-fashioned kind — it’s usually on the bottom shelf
  • 1 cup of white wine
  • 3 cups of red potatoes cubed
  • 6 celery stalks cubed
  • 2 large yellow onions peeled and roughly chopped
  • 4 cloves of garlic
  • 2 cups of sliced bacon or bacon ends cubed
  • 4 cups of carrots peeled and cubed
  • 3 liters of chicken or vegetable stock
  • 2 tsp of Aleppo Pepper
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 leaves bunch of Italian parsley removed from the stems
  • Coconut milk or heavy cream to finish
  • Garnish: more roasted corn a drizzle of best quality olive oil, celery leaves, dill, chives, more Aleppo Pepper, chopped cilantro

Instructions

If using fresh corn:

  • Preheat the oven to 425℉. Adjust the rack to the middle of the oven.
  • Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • Melt the butter and brush onto the corn, then season generously with salt and pepper. Arrange the corn ears and cubed carrots on the lined baking sheet and cover with foil. Roast for 30 minutes. Let cool to room temperature.
  • Slice off one end of each ear, then use a serrated knife to remove the corn from the ears.
  • Place the denuded cobs in a pot with the chicken or vegetable stock and a few bay leaves and simmer for 1-2 hours. The broth will then be infused with a delectable “corny” flavor that will make the soup even better!

If using frozen corn:

  • Do not despair: this recipe is just as good — well, almost. Corn is frozen at the peak of its freshness so your soup will not suffer. Do roast the kernels with the cubed carrots, though — this step makes all the difference. Drizzle with the same amount of butter and salt and roast for 10 minutes.

When you are finished prepping the corn:

  • Put 1 cup of the accumulated corn kernels to one side.
  • Place a large heavy-bottomed soup pot on medium-low heat. Fry the bacon cubes until crisp. Remove the bacon to drain on a plate lined with paper towel. Discard all but 2 Tbl of the accumulated bacon fat.
  • Sauté the onion and garlic in the bacon fat until soft, adding 1 tsp of Aleppo Pepper as you do and a good pinch of salt, then add the celery and sauté for another 3 minutes. Add the white wine and simmer until the liquid evaporates, using the back of a wooden spoon to collect up all the lovely bits on the bottom of the pot.
  • Add the potatoes, the remainder of the corn kernels (you’ve set one cup aside, remember?), and sauté for 3 minutes. Add the can of creamed corn and the corn-infused chicken or vegetable stock. Stir to combine, then bring to a gentle simmer. Cook covered over low heat for 25 minutes, or until the potato cubes are softened.
  • Pass the soup through a colander set over a large pot or heat-resistant bowl. Place half of the corn/potato chunks and half of the liquid into a blender and process until smooth. You can also use a hand-held mixer, food processor, or food mill to achieve the same effect: to blend the ingredients into a thick consistency.
  • Return all the ingredients to your original pot. Add the carrots, half the bacon, and the chopped parsley. Stir to combine and simmer very gently for another 10 minutes to allow all the flavors to cozy up.
  • The soup is now ready to serve. Finish it with a generous dollop of coconut milk or cream in each bowl. Drizzle the soup’s surface with a bit of olive oil, then garnish with the remaining bacon, corn kernels, and the other ingredients suggested above.

Notes

If you don’t have a blender, you can use a hand-held food processor, food mill, or pass the solids through a fine sieve with the back of a wooden spoon. It's very simple to make this soup vegetarian and even vegan if you omit the bacon and/or the cream (substitute coconut milk for the latter).
This soup is a real trooper — hearty enough for a meal when paired with a nice crusty loaf and some butter. It freezes wonderfully, and it is also mild enough to be a superb base for more protein options such as shrimp, clams, or more bacon. Enjoy!
If you are somewhere where you can't find creamed corn, substitute another 1-1/2 cups of corn, whizzed in a blender with 3 Tbl of milk and 1 Tbl of melted butter.   
Recipe Source:  jennifereremeeva.com/food
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