Wednesday, February 29, 2012

crab & corn chowder

Well, hello there. Did you forget who I am? I wouldn't blame you if you did. I took a bit of a hiatus in the past few weeks. I blame parental visits, trips to New York City and final projects due. It's been busy and I've missed cooking and baking! However, some exciting news - while I was away, I was given a Leibster award! This is an awesome award given to the smaller blogs. I'm looking forward to posting more about the award and recognising other bloggers. Thank you so much to Tobias at T and Tea Cake!

Back to my lack of posting, I made up for it today - I made crab & corn chowder, pickled jalapeno cornbread and rhubarb pie. I guess you could say I was on fire? At the very least, I was bitten by the cooking bug (and pressed to do a self-portrait for one of my classes, which, believe it or not, necessitated the baking of pie) and I have a few recipes ready to go for those who are interested in the creative musings of squirrel brains.

(speaking of squirrels - can I introduce you to this cute little battery park resident? I'm pleased as punch to have gotten so close to him - or her - thanks entirely to the bird lady who kept throwing peanuts at me.)

Okay, okay. I know you people don't come here looking for ani-pals. Let's get into soup. Chunky soup. A chowder that lives up to its name. A chowder that deserves to be pronounced "chowdah." Bacon, corn, onions, potato and crab in a roux base with milk and vegetable broth. And white wine. And crab juice. Yes. Yes... YES!

crab & corn chowder

2 strips of bacon, diced
1/2 an onion, diced
3 cups fresh or frozen corn kernels
1 can of crab meat (170g - I used Oceans), juice reserved
3 tablespoons butter
1/3 cup all purpose flour
1/4 cup white wine
3 cups vegetable broth
2 cups peeled and chopped potatoes, parboiled (1 inch dice)
1 cup milk
salt & white pepper to taste
1/2 cup grated old cheddar, plus additional for sprinkling
freshly snipped chives for garnish

  • In a heavy bottomed soup pot, saute bacon until it becomes oily and slick. Add onions and cook until transparent. Stir in corn and cook for another 4-5 minutes before adding the crab. Toss for a minute or two, then empty the pot into a bowl and set aside.
  • Melt butter in the same soup pot and gradually whisk in the flour. Add in the crab juice and the wine (gradually) from the can to help along the process. Continually whisking, slowly add the vegetable broth and bring it to a boil. Reduce the heat and season with salt and white pepper.
  • Throw in the parboiled potatoes and allow them to simmer until very soft. Return the corn/crab mixture to the pot, then add the milk and cheddar. 
  • When it is again hot, ladle into bowls and serve with a sprinkling of cheddar and chives.

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