The weather has started to cool off a bit in Virginia. Fall is definitely in the air, and I absolutely love it. On the cold nights, I want nothing more than a hearty soup for dinner. There’s just something comforting about hot soup on cold nights. I have so many recipes saved to try, but this one, with a little bit of southwest flair, really jumped out at me.
This chowder is certainly hearty. It’s got chicken, potatoes and two types of corn. The green chiles and cayenne give it just enough heat. Instead of using heavy cream to thicken it, flour and creamed corn are used. This gives the chowder a rich, thick texture without making it too heavy. The night we made this, we topped it with bacon, cheddar cheese and scallions. The next day, when I reheated some for lunch (and when the pictures were taken), I topped mine with cilantro and baked tortilla strips. Either way you decide to serve it, this chowder will warm you through on those chilly nights.
Chicken, Corn and Potato Chowder
3 slices bacon
1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite-size pieces
1 cup chopped onion
1 cup diced red bell pepper
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 can (4 oz.) diced green chiles
5 1/4 cups low-sodium chicken broth
2 cups peeled and diced russet potatoes
1 cup frozen whole-kernel corn
1 can (14 oz.) creamed corn
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
2 cups milk
1 1/2 cups grated sharp cheddar cheese, plus more for serving
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
salt and pepper to taste
thinly sliced scallions or chopped cilantro, for serving
-Cook bacon in a large sauce pan over medium heat until crispy. Remove the bacon to a paper towel lined plate and set aside.
-Add chicken, onion, bell pepper and garlic to the pan with bacon drippings. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes. Add diced green chiles and continue to cook 1 minute longer.
-Add chicken broth and potatoes and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer for about 20 minutes, or until the potatoes are tender.
-Add both frozen and creamed corn and stir to combine.
-Place flour in a medium bowl and gradually whisk in milk. Add the mixture to the soup and bring up to medium heat. Cook for about 15 minutes, stirring frequently, until the soup has thickened.
-Add the cheese and cayenne. Taste for seasoning and add salt and pepper if needed.
-Ladle into bowls and serve with desired toppings.
-To make tortilla strips, brush corn tortillas with olive oil. Cut into strips and sprinkle with seasoning salt. Bake for about 10 minutes in a 350º oven.
Serves 6-8 (We had two dinner sized portions and several smaller lunch portions.)
Adapted from Cookin’ Canuck