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Late Summer Jalapeno-Corn Chowder with Creme Fraiche and Chives

Posted Sep 23 2010 10:03am

Last night’s dinner was a big success!

I had my friends over for a seasonal dinner to welcome the first day of Fall.  On the menu were dishes which incorporated produce which is currently in season. Every vegetable I used in my dishes came from the farmers market down the street.

It was a tough choice, but I finally decided to make:

Jalapeño-Corn Chowder
Swiss Chard Quiche
Arugula and Baby Greens Salad with Pears, Walnuts, Blue Cheese and Maple-Dijon Vinaigrette

My friends brought some great dishes as well. We had:

Garlic Mashed Potatoes and Sweet Potatoes from Robyn
Pumpkin Bread from Laura
Mulled Wine from Jack (With lots of spices that made my apartment smell like Fall!)

Arugula, Pear, Walnut and Blue Cheese Salad

~

Late Summer Jalapeño-Corn Chowder with Crème Frâiche and Chives

The corn chowder took the most time out of everything, but it was definitely worth the effort.  Nice and creamy with lots of fresh corn flavor, and a definite kick from the jalapeños.  Maybe a little too much of a kick — I added three jalapeños, but two probably would have done it.  I do love spicy food, though, and I’m looking forward to leftovers!

Ingredients:

8 cups fresh corn kernels (about 10 ears’ worth)
1/2 yellow onion, small dice
2 stalks celery, small dice
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 cups vegetable broth
2 cups milk
3 Red potatoes, large dice
2 jalapeños, diced
1 large roasted red pepper, diced (about 1/4 cup)
Salt and pepper to taste
Crème Frâiche (optional)
–> Nonfat Greek Yogurt is also a great topping!
Chives, chopped (optional)

.

The corn, jalapeños, celery, onion, garlic and red pepper in this recipe all came from the farmers’ market.  I came home with a bag literally stuffed to the brim with corn.  When I asked for “maybe 8… or 10 ears,”  the man put 10 in my bag and then threw 2 more in for free as I was leaving.

12 ears of corn. That’s a lot of corn.  It didn’t all get used in the soup.

I went to work husking, washing and de-kernaling (that is definitely not a word) all 12 of these.  My hands were tired afterwards!

I actually found a worm in one of the ears.  Stop eating my corn, worm! Not cool!  This didn’t get used…

To make the soup:

1.  In a food processor, puree half the corn (4 cups) with the vegetable broth.  You’ll probably have to do two batches.

2.  Saute the onions, celery and garlic in olive oil over medium-high until soft.

3.  Add the broth/corn mixture, the rest of the corn (4 cups), potatoes and the milk. Bring to a simmer. You may want to add 1/2 to 1 cup extra water or broth to get the right consistency.

4.  Add the jalapeños and roasted red peppers.

Roasted red peppers that I MADE MYSELF!  It wasn’t that hard. Really. I will show you how, soon.

5.  Continue to simmer until the potato is cooked through, about 15 minutes.  Taste, and season with salt and pepper.

6.  Top with crème frâiche and chives. Enjoy!

~

I didn’t want to over-do this post, so I’ll blog the Swiss Chard Quiche in a later post — I promise!

What did you do to ring in the first day of Fall?


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