We arrived home from our haunted vacation (which I will tell you all about in a post to come later this week) yesterday afternoon to cool rain, a yard full of blooms, and an empty, empty refrigerator. Our dinners before we left consisted of this delicious corn chowder, which I meant to freeze some of for when we came home. It didn’t happen. We slurped bowl after bowl, and before we knew it, the whole batch was gone.
With corn in season, this is a perfectly sweet summer dish. It’s easy, flavorful, and (theoretically) freezes well if you can bear storing half for a later date.
First, you’ll need corn. Sweet yellow or white cobs are easy to come by in the summer months. For potatoes, I like to use half yukon golds and half sweet potatoes—the combination blends nicely with the sugary bursts of corn kernels. You’ll also need one yellow onion (any variety would do—I used vidalia), some garlic, flour, chicken broth, half and half (or heavy cream, if you’re feeling naughty), and bacon to add a little meatiness.
Slice the bacon strips into 1/4″ pieces with a sharp knife.
Mince the garlic…
…and give the onion a quick dice.
Wash the potatoes. Skin the sweet potatoes, and give both varieties about a 1″ dice.
And finally, carefully slice the corn kernels from the cobs.
Is there anything prettier than sweet summer corn? I think not.
Fry the bacon pieces over medium-high heat until they begin to crisp. We’re going to make the chowder in the same pot, so make it a large dutch oven or another large pot (just not non-stick, please).
Remove the bacon with a slotted spatula and let it drain on a paper towel. Shoo away the man of the house before he picks the plate clean.
Add the onion and garlic to the rendered bacon fat. Saute for about 5 minutes, or until the onion becomes tender and lightly browned….
Add the flour to the pan…
…and toss quickly to coat the onion. Be careful that the flour doesn’t begin to burn.
Immediately pour in the chicken broth and some water and stir quickly, scraping all of the browned bits from the bottom of the pan. Add the potatoes, corn…
…and the bacon. Don’t forget the crispy, salty, lovely bacon! Give the pot a good stir and let simmer over medium heat for about 20 minutes, or until the potatoes are fork-tender.
Pour in the half and half and season with salt and pepper to taste. Let simmer for another 5 minutes to bring the whole thing up to serving temperature.
Serve with a warm, crusty bread for sopping up all that creamy broth.
I can’t decide what I like most about this dish. The sweet corn? The tender bites of potato? The hint of rich bacon flavor?
Eating it. Just eating it is what I like best. Someone kick me for not saving a bowl of this for dinner tonight. I’m no good at delayed gratification.
Creamy Corn Chowder with Bacon
Makes 8-10 bowlfuls. Serve with a warm, crusty bread for dipping.
- 6 strips of bacon
- 1 yellow onion
- 2 cloves garlic
- 2 sweet potatoes
- 4 yukon gold potatoes
- 6 cobs of sweet yellow or white corn, removed from the husks and rid of the stringy bits
- 1/4 cup flour
- 4 cups chicken broth
- 2 cups water
- 1 pint (2 cups) half and half
- salt and pepper to taste
Grab a large cutting board and a sharp knife to prep your ingredients. Slice the bacon into 1/4″ pieces, dice the onion, and mince the garlic. Wash all of the potatoes and peel the sweet potatoes. Chop both varieties into 1″ cubes. Carefully slice the corn kernels from the cobs.
Preheat a large pot or dutch oven over medium-high heat (any large pot that is not non-stick will do). Add the bacon and cook until crispy, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a paper towel using a slotted spatula. Reduce heat to medium and add the garlic and onion to the rendered bacon fat. Saute for about 5 minutes or until the onion becomes tender and slightly browned. Turn heat back up to medium-high. Toss in the flour and stir quickly to coat the onion. Be careful not to burn the flour. Immediately add the chicken broth and water, stirring to release the browned bits from the bottom of the pan.
Stir in the potatoes, corn, and cooked bacon. Simmer for about 20 minutes over medium heat, or until potatoes are fork-tender. Stir in the half and half and add salt and pepper to taste. Simmer for 5 minutes more to bring up to serving temperature. Ladle into bowls and serve with a hunk of crusty bread.