I (Ryan) have never made a corn chowder before and I do not believe Crystal has either…at least my memory contains no recollection of this meal in the whirlwind of new recipes zipping through our kitchen over the last three plus years at our current residence.
This recipe was included in our CSA newsletter and looked perfect.
First off, cut the corn off the cobs. Then I began making corn stock that contained low sodium vegetable stock, water, and the cobs that were left over after “de-corning” them. While the stock was gaining its corn flavored bliss, I sautéed some leeks until translucent and then added parsley and carrots. Once the carrots softened a bit, I tossed in the cut up Yukon Gold potatoes and let them cook with the above ingredients before adding the corn stock.
All these ingredients are good, but the best was yet to come. The Bouquet Garni, which is “a bunch of herbs tied together, wrapped in cheesecloth or enclosed in a small cloth sack, and immersed during cooking, as in a soup or stew.” This is another new concept for me, but one I was more than willing to utilize. Our bouquet contained sage, parsley, thyme, oregano, and basil. These herbs filled our house with the most amazing smell while the chowder was simmering.
Once the potatoes were soft, I added the corn kernels previously cut off the cob and reserved to the side. Okay…I will fess up. I initially put the corn kernels in the stock rather than the cobs. I realized my error about 10 minutes into the stock making process and then had to strain the corn from the stock and add the cobs instead. Lesson learned: READ THE RECIPE IN ENTIRETY. I have experienced this problem before and apparently, that moment of recipe skimming had escaped my mind.
Anyways, once the corn kernels were heated, I removed the bouquet garni and added some half- &-half. The half- &-half is good, but next time we are going to try soymilk. I swear we can never have the exact same recipe twice…we are always tweaking and editing our recipes. This chowder was served up with some green onions and a little hot sauce in mine. YUM!!! The leftovers were amazing too. This is a new favorite that I hope we will make again someday ;)