Nothing like a bowl of hot soup on a cold autumn day.
And if you’re in Calgary like me, today is the perfect day. I love fall, I truly do – but I do not love this whole super short summer, barely a fall and into the longest winter ever thing that seems to be happening the last few years…I’m not liking it. Plus the super sunny days that made everything ok – those seem to be fewer these days too. Cue crying, because it actually makes me feel like crying. Vitamin D drops here I come.
Ok, enough of me whining about the weather. I’ll get on with giving you this yummy recipe to help make you feel better about the cold grey skies.
This soup is delicious, slightly sweet from the delicious corn (season finishing up as we speak), hearty and warming.
It takes a little time, but I promise you it’s totally worth it. Get it going right when you come home from work and have a later evening bowl in your PJs.
YIELD – 6-8 servings
- 6 ears of corn (about 41/2 cups)
- 12 oz. bacon
- 1 tbsp. olive oil (if needed)
- 1 medium-sized white onion, diced (about 1 cup)
- 1/2 bell pepper, diced (red, orange or yellow work well)
- 3/4 cup fennel stalks, sliced
- 3/4 cup carrots, sliced
- 3 garlic cloves, sliced
- 1 lb. baby yellow potatoes, cut into quarters
- 1/2 tsp finely chopped fresh rosemary
- 1 tsp finely chopped fresh thyme
- 1 bay leaf
- 4 cups of veggie stock
- 4 cups of heavy cream
- Dice bacon and cook on medium heat in a large heavy bottom soup pot until crispy (add 1 tbsp olive oil if necessary). Stir occasionally. Once crispy, remove from pan and set on a paper towel lined plate to cool.
- Remove the extra bacon fat for the soup pot and add the onions and cook on medium for about 5 min or until translucent. Then add the garlic, peppers, carrots, and fennel and cook for another 5-7 minutes.
- Shuck the corn and remove all silt. Then carefully using a sharp knife, slice the corn from the cob. Place all the cut corn into a bowl rinse and set aside. Put the corn cobs into the soup pot along with the veggie stock and heavy cream. Bring to a rolling boil and then reduce the heat, add the bay leaf, and simmer the corn cobs for about 20 minutes.
- Remove the cobs and bay leaf and discard. Add the rosemary and thyme and potatoes and continue to simmer for another 20 minutes. Then add the corn , simmer for 15 minutes. Last add the bacon back to the soup.
- Season with salt and pepper and serve.
The thing that I love about corn chowder is the depth of flavour you get out of something so simple. There’s this complex sweetness from the corn, the carrots and the onions that is made even more amazing when they are farm fresh like the ones I used from my YYC Growers Harvest Box. You get the salty addition of the bacon and finally there’s this beautiful balance created by the spice from the fennel. Serve it with a fresh sourdough bread with good butter, and you will be in heaven.
Although it isn’t a 15 min recipe, the hour that you put into it is totally worth it.
If you’re vegetarian, you can of course omit the bacon – but if you’re not, it’s an important ingredient.
I hope everyone in Calgary is staying warm, and everyone on the East coast and beyond are sending us warm weather vibes.
Till the next recipe,