Soup Month!

Corn Chowder topped with bacon and a braided roll.

Corn Chowder topped with bacon and a braided roll.

January is National Soup Month. After the holidays we try to find ways to stay warm while mother natural hits us with subzero temperatures, ice, rain and snow. And, what better way to stay warm during this time of year with a good pot of soup heated and cooked on the stove.

On a cloudy, cold, snow filled afternoon we decided to make a Corn Chowder from scratch. We found a really great recipe on www.foodnetwork.com which is found below. The corn chowder was very easy and fun to make. Use less chicken stock if you want a thicker chowder. Since there is only two of us we divided the recipe into a quarter of what is suggested on the original recipe but we kept the same ingredients. To add a little extra, we garnished with parsley and a braided roll. Enjoy!

Ingredients:
8 ounces bacon, chopped
1/4 cup good olive oil
6 cups chopped yellow onions (4 large onions)
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
1/2 cup flour
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
12 cups chicken stock
6 cups medium-diced white boiling potatoes, unpeeled (2 pounds)
10 cups corn kernels, fresh (10 ears) or frozen (3 pounds)
2 cups half-and-half
1/2 pound sharp white cheddar cheese, grated

Directions:
In a large stockpot over medium-high heat, cook the bacon and olive oil until the bacon is crisp, about 5 minutes. Remove the bacon with a slotted spoon and reserve. Reduce the heat to medium, add the onions and butter to the fat, and cook for 10 minutes, until the onions are translucent.

Stir in the flour, salt, pepper, and turmeric and cook for 3 minutes. Add the chicken stock and potatoes, bring to a boil, and simmer uncovered for 15 minutes, until the potatoes are tender. If using fresh corn, cut the kernels off the cob and blanch them for 3 minutes in boiling salted water. Drain. (If using frozen corn you can skip this step.) Add the corn to the soup, then add the half-and-half and cheddar. Cook for 5 more minutes, until the cheese is melted. Season, to taste, with salt and pepper. Serve hot with a garnish of bacon.

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