{ cheddar corn chowder }

cheddar corn chowder | Recipe via DisplacedHousewife

cheddar corn chowder

{ warning: overeating season imminent }

I have been on a bit of a soup bender lately. It’s not just because cool weather is finally closing in on us and I’m no longer walking around with sweat streaming down my body and pooling in any crevasse it can find (although, please know that I am #gratefulAF for this). It’s more because as a very general rule soups tend to be relatively healthy. I’m not talking about cream-laden soups, I’m talking about the other 75% of soups that have a healthy ratio of broth to protein to veggies. That last ratio is key because with that veggie component comes the bonus of not having to make a salad or green thing with dinner (this strongly appeals to my lazy-busy side). Additionally, and most importantly, this healthy factor is extremely important right now because we are zooming in on Overeating Season. Yup. That’s a thing.

Starting right about now, I start to say yes to everything. Someone asks: would you like a cocktail? Inside I think: but it’s noon? The voice comes out of me and says: that’d be great, thanks. Or, I put on some fitted jeans and think, it’s just a drink with a friend. Then the friend says: the fried calamari and charcuterie plate sound good, don’t they? Inside I think: my pants are tight. The voice comes out of me and says: why don’t we get the cheese plate too…does that come with extra bread? And we’ll take one more round. Thanks.

If we don’t get ahead of the game now, it’s going to be a very uncomfortable happy new year. Like, I don’t know if rubber bands around my pant buttons will suffice. So I’m thinking lots of soups in between holiday festivities, including corn chowder. Are you with me?

This cheddar corn chowder sounds really unhealthy, doesn’t it? But, in fact, it’s not. It’s actually an old recipe from Cooking Light that I’ve twisted and tweaked in several ways. First, I added chicken thighs because they’re so moist and luscious. If this gives you pause, just trust me. I also added more veggies (’tis the season) and I got rid of the flour and milk for thickening the soup and added corn starch and puréed some of the veggies and broth. Oh, and I added more bacon. I mean, I’m not a saint.

cheddar corn chowder | Recipe via DisplacedHousewife

cheddar corn chowder | Recipe via DisplacedHousewife

{ cheddar corn chowder }

Makes 4-6 Main Course Servings

INGREDIENTS

  • 6 slices of yummy, delicious bacon (cut vertically in small, thin strips (lardons)…I use scissors for this)
  • 1.5 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs
  • 1.5 cups red bell pepper, small dice
  • 1/2 cup yellow onion, small dice
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 5 cups chicken stock
  • 2.5 cups red potatoes, diced (I leave the skin on)
  • 3 cups frozen corn, divided
  • 2 tablespoons corn starch
  • 1.5 cups sharp cheddar cheese
  • 1/4 cup chives, minced
  • Salt and pepper to taste

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Grab a beer. This is going to take less than two hours…most of it with you doing nothing and the soup stewing about.
  2. Heat a large Dutch oven over medium heat and add your small, bacon strips and cook until nice and crisp. Should take about 5ish minutes. Take the bacon out of the Dutch oven and set on paper towels to drain a bit. if you have more than 1-2 tablespoons of bacon grease in the bottom of the pan, drain some out so your soup doesn’t get too greasy.
  3. Turn up the heat to medium-high and add the chicken thighs to the bacon grease and brown on all sides. Sprinkle them with a little salt and pepper while they’re getting all nice and caramelized. Browning should take about 5 minutes.
  4. Once the thighs have a nice golden hue happening, lower the heat to medium and add the chopped red pepper, onion and garlic in with the chicken. Sauté until softened, about 3 minutes. Scrape up the nice brown flavor bits on the bottom of the pan while you’re at it.
  5. Pour the chicken broth into the pot and bring the soup to a boil. Put the lid on, lower the heat to a simmer and set the timer for 1 hour. You’re done for now. Go put on some comfy clothes or watch the telly.
  6. After the timer goes off, turn the heat up to medium and add your potatoes and 2.5 cups of corn and put the lid back on. Set the timer for 20 minutes.
  7. After 20 minutes, put 1/2 cup of corn, 2 tablespoons of cornstarch and 1 cup of the hot soup broth (which can include more corn and potatoes) in a blender and purée until smooth. Add this mixture back into the Dutch oven. Turn the heat to high and bring the soup to a boil until it starts to thicken a bit…should take a couple of minutes. It’s not a hold-your-spoon-vertical corn chowder…it’s a little thinner because I don’t hit the thickeners that hard. I like it that way.
  8. Use two forks to shred the chicken. I keep it right there in the pot…but if you’re stressed about the heat, then take it out, shred the meat and then put it back in the soup.
  9. Add 1 cup of sharp cheddar cheese to the soup and stir to blend.
  10. To serve corn chowder: throw on some more cheese, chopped chives and that chopped bacon that you’ve been eating for the past two hours.

{ on my mind }

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cheddar corn chowder | Recipe via DisplacedHousewife

4 Comments

  • Cathy Burgess 2015/11/12 at 1:42 AM

    Just what I’ve been looking for!

    Reply
    • DisplacedHousewife 2015/11/12 at 1:57 AM

      Oh good!! I hope you like it Cathy…wishing I had more right now!! xox

      Reply
  • Jazz 2015/11/11 at 1:26 AM

    This looks amazing!! I’m so happy you did a soup for cold weather!

    Reply

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