For a few years, I shared lots of soup recipes on my second blog, called Soup Chick. (Although I stopped publishing recipes there in 2014, you can still access those recipes online.) Many of those soups never found their way here, to The Perfect Pantry, and I pretty much forgot about most of them. One day, Susan, a devoted reader of both blogs, reminded me of all the good slurpiness on the Soup Chick site, and she suggested I bring some of it here to share with you.
This chowder, thick and oh-so-spicy, is one of my favorites. The smoky heat comes from chipotle peppers tempered a bit by the cream. If hot and spicy isn't the way you roll, you can cut the amount called for in the recipe from two peppers all the way down to 1 tablespoon of the adobo sauce (and no peppers), or anywhere in between, to your taste. Because the recipe calls for frozen corn, you can make it year-round, and because there are no clams or other shellfish, your friends who don't eat fish will be happy. When you're ready to wake up your tastebuds with some amped-up comfort food, I hope you'll give this "forgotten soup" a try.
Corn chowder with chipotle cream
From the pantry, you'll need: onion, fresh thyme, chicken stock, chipotle pepper in adobo, kosher salt, fresh black pepper.
Serves 4 as a main dish, with salad and bread on the side.
1 tsp vegetable or canola oil
1 small onion, peeled and quartered
16 oz frozen organic corn kernels
1 Tbsp fresh thyme leaves (or 1-1/2 tsp dried thyme)
4 cups chicken stock (homemade or low-sodium store-bought), divided
2 chipotle peppers in adobo, minced (or use just one pepper, if you don't want as much heat)
1/2 cup heavy cream
Kosher salt, to taste
Fresh black pepper, to taste
In a Dutch oven or small heavy stock pot, heat the oil and sauté the onion briefly over medium heat, just until translucent.
Add the corn and thyme leaves, stir to combine, and cook for 2 minutes. Then, add 3 cups of the chicken stock. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to simmer, cover the pot, and cook for 15 minutes.
While the soup is cooking, whisk together the chipotle peppers and cream in a measuring cup, and set aside. (If you don't want all of the fire power of the chipotles, cut down to one pepper, or even just 1 tablespoon of the adobo sauce from the can.)
After the soup has cooked for 15 minutes, remove the pot from heat. Using an immersion blender, pureé the soup to the desired texture, chunky or creamy smooth. If you don't have an immersion blender, allow the soup to cool for 10-15 minutes, then pureé in batches in a stand blender or food processor, and return it to the pot.
Return the pot to the stove, and set at lowest heat. Stir in the chipotle cream. If you want a thinner soup, add some or all of the remaining 1 cup of stock. Taste, and add salt and black pepper, to taste (if you use store-bought stock, you might not need any salt).
Serve hot. Can be made ahead and refrigerated for up to two days.
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