I am a chowder kind of girl, so when I saw this recipe on Twelve Tomatoes, I knew that it was in my future. The recipe is good, very good, but I took it over the top by stirring in a cup of shredded Pepper Jack cheese, and kicking it up a bit with some smoky ground cumin. Even Mr. O-P, who is not a spicy guy, and whose soup love begins and ends with Chicken Noodle, liked this one. The original recipe called for five cups (approximately 6 ears) of fresh corn. I'm sure that fresh corn, in season, and perhaps roasted on the grill, would have added much to the deliciousness, but I only had frozen and it was still delicious. The heat is adaptable, so if you like more, add another chipotle. Also, experiment with your own variety of onions. I didn't quite have enough scallions called for, but did have one lone leek on the verge of becoming limp and trash bound, so I thinly sliced it, and tossed it in; if you don't have a leek, use more scallions.
Bacon Chili Corn Chowder
6 slices bacon, chopped into 1/2-inch pieces
1 1/2 large yellow onions, diced
4 scallions, chopped
1 leek, white part only, finely sliced
2 tablespoons butter
1 15-ounce bag frozen corn
2 whole Chipotle peppers in Adobo sauce, diced
1 can (4 ounces) diced green chilies
32 ounces homemade chicken stock
2 cups heavy cream
4 tablespoons Masa (I used cornmeal)
1 cup Pepper Jack cheese, shredded
1/4 teaspoon cumin
1/8 teaspoon smoked paprika
Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
In a large pot, cook bacon pieces over medium heat until crispy. Remove some of the bacon and save for garnish. Add the diced onions (scallions and leeks); cook and stir for 3-4 minutes.
After the onions start to soften, add butter to the pot, let melt and then add the corn. Stir and cook for 2 minutes.
Add both varieties of chilies and stir, cooking for 1-2 minutes.
Pour in chicken stock and bring to a simmer, then pour in cream.
In a small container, combine Masa (or cornmeal) with a little bit of water and mix together, then pour into the soup. Allow to cook and thicken for around 15 minutes. Add cumin and paprika, and stir to blend. Add cheese and stir until it melts.
Garnish with croutons, chopped chives or scallions, crumbled bacon, popcorn, crumbled tortilla chips, or cheese curls.
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