It's been a long, rainy January. It isn't particularly cold, but the thought alone of homemade soup provides comfort to the short winter days. My family often ate homemade soup when I was young. My mum made ham and pea, beef barley, chicken noodle, cream of asparagus/cauliflower/broccoli, and clam chowder. All very delicious. And all required vegetable prep - which I remember being my first "job" in the kitchen (my mum's saying was, "help or get out", which was of course not directed at me but rather at my brothers!).
I loved being in the kitchen as a child, probably because that's where my mum was most of the time and I was (still am) attached to her at the hip. My first kitchen utensil to master (other than a wooden spoon I guess) was a potato peeler. We had a step ladder in the kitchen, which I would pull up to the sink to help prep. So, it wasn't surprising to me when just a few days ago I looked into the sink with a colander full of potato skins and felt like I was 7 years old. And like my 7-year-old self I still need a stool in the kitchen! Even the smell of raw peeled potatoes reminds me of my childhood (we ate a lot of potatoes). I feel like we ate them with every meal, but my mum will have to chime in on that one!!
I flipped through the Farm and City Cookbook and decided to make chowder. I have only ever made my mum's clam chowder, which you start off by making a roux with butter, flour, and slowly add milk. This chowder is different - no milk. It is gluten free and dairy free, with a vegetarian stock base. The broth is very tasty and flavourful - but I still couldn't resist adding some shaved pieces of old cheddar on top, which for me made it next level! Enjoy :) and enjoy it as leftovers too!
Corn & Potato Chowder
6 cups water
6 potatoes, peeled and cubed
1 stalk celery, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 vegetable bouillon cubes
dash dried sage
½ tsp dried thyme
½ tsp dried oregano
½ tsp seasoned salt
freshly grated pepper
1 tsp cumin seeds
¼ tsp nutmeg
4 cups corn
1 Tbsp butter
¼ cup sweet green pepper, diced
½ cup green onions or scallions, sliced
1 Tbsp fresh dill, minced
Bring water to boil in large pot. Add potatoes, onion, celery, and garlic.
Return to boil; add bouillon cubes and seasonings. Cover and simmer over medium heat until potatoes are tender (15 to 20 minutes).
Remove 2 cups of potatoes and set aside.
Reduce heat to low and add corn. Simmer, stirring to make sure chowder doesn't stick, for 5 minutes.
Meanwhile, melt butter in a small skillet. Saute green pepper and green onion for 3 minutes. Stir into chowder.
Mash reserved potatoes and return to chowder. Stir in dill. Adjust seasonings.
*I used 3 cups of corn (frozen) and I did not have any dill - still tasty :)
*Recipe from the Farm and City Cookbook