Gary's A-Maize-ing Chowder

1 lb bacon
4 tablespoons bacon fat
4 large celery stalks, chopped (about 3 cups)
1 cup diced white onion
4 cups water
4 cups chicken broth
2 russet potatoes, peeled, cut into ½" cubes (about 4 cups)
4 cloves garlic crushed
2 15oz cans cream-style corn (with liquid)
2 15oz cans whole kernel corn (with liquid)
4 teaspoons granulated sugar
1 teaspoon sea salt
¼ teaspoon ground white pepper
1 cup all-purpose flour
3 cups whole milk
1 cup half and half
Fresh Parsley

Cook bacon in a sauté pan until crisp, reserve the rendered fat. Drain and finely chop the bacon (set aside bacon). In the reserved bacon fat, saute the celery, onion, and garlic for about 5 minutes in large stock pot. Do not brown.

Add 4 cups of water, 4 cups of chicken broth and chopped potato, bring to a boil then reduce heat and simmer for 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add creamed corn (with liquid) and canned whole-kernel corn (with liquid), bacon, sugar, salt, pepper and simmer for 20 additional minutes, stirring occasionally. In a separate bowl , combine the milk, half-and-half and flour and whisk until smooth. Add this mixture to the soup and continue to simmer and stir for an additional 10 to 15 minutes, until thickened.
Spoon into bowls to serve and top with chopped fresh parsley.

Wine Suggestion: Galen Glen Riesling
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