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Sunday, January 23, 2011

Broccoli Chowder with Corn and Bacon

Serves: 4
This is pretty laid-back. Chop the bacon, get it cooking, then you can get all your other ingredients ready as the bacon cooks, stopping once in a while to give it a stir. This recipe just goes to show that it doesn't matter if your vegetables are fresh... everything tastes awesome when there's bacon grease involved.

4 slices bacon, cut into 1-inch pieces
1 medium onion, chopped
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
5 cups chicken broth, or 2 (14.5 oz) cans
1 large potato, peeled and diced
1-1/2 cups fresh chopped broccoli, or 10 oz. pkg. frozen broccoli
1 can kernel corn, drained or 1 (10 oz) pkg. frozen corn
1/2 tsp. dried thyme
1 cup whole milk*
kosher salt and fresh-ground pepper

*if you don't keep whole milk, you can do what I did... I melted about 1/3 cup cream cheese with about 2/3 cup 2% milk over medium-low heat, whisking until smooth. If you don't have cream cheese you could use plain yogurt or sour cream instead. I use this method a lot in a cream-based soup or sauce.

Cook the bacon in a large pot over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally, until crispy, about 8-10 minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on a paper towel-lined plate. Increase the heat to medium and add the onion to the pot, stirring occasionally, until the onion begins to soften in 6-8 minutes.

Add the flour and cook, stirring constantly, for about 30 seconds. Add the broth and potato and bring it up to a boil, stirring and scraping up the browned bits from the bottom of the pot. Turn heat down to a simmer and cook for 10 minutes, or until potato is tender. Bring it up to a boil if vegetables are frozen, or leave on simmer if fresh or canned. Stir in broccoli, corn, and thyme, wait for it to come back up to a boil if frozen, drop back down to simmer and add milk. Simmer 10 minutes or until broccoli is heated through and tender. Season to taste with salt and pepper and serve topped with bacon.

Source: Martha Stewart

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