Sunday, December 19, 2010

Day 348: Hearty Corn Chowder

Hi everyone!  I'm back from taking a little break and spending time with my family.  A big thanks to Randy and Arlana Patten for filling in this week.  I hope you enjoyed their recipes as much as I did.  They are wonderfully kind people to take over for me on such short notice.  I noticed one of their recipes waiting to be published, so you may get one more from them! 

Thanks for all your kind words and prayers on behalf of my mom.  She is doing well and we did get some encouraging news from the doctor on Friday.  Her cancer was caught at an early stage and is very treatable.  Not that it will be fun, but the prognosis is good.  Her treatments will start after the new year so we are planning on enjoying Christmas to the fullest!

The break from blogging was nice, but I didn't take a break from cooking.  Its such a habit to cook in my dutch ovens, that I kept right on doing it.  Cooking really is therapy for me.  It gives my mind something else to think about and is an outlet for all my nervous, stressed out energy!  So, thanks again for all your love and support and on to today's recipe.  Its one of my favorite soups.  This is comfort food at its best.  The fact that it is loaded with bacon is a plus too!

Hearty Corn Chowder
12" dutch oven

1/2 lb. sliced bacon
1 cup chopped celery (I ran out of celery so I used carrots)
1/2 cup chopped onion
2 cups diced, peeled potatoes
1 cup water
2 cups frozen corn, thawed
1 can cream style corn
1 (12 oz.) can evaporated milk
6 oz. smoked sausage, cut into 1/4 inch slices (I used kielbasa)
1 tsp. dill weed
salt and pepper to taste

In your dutch oven, over a full spread of coals, cook the bacon until crispy.  Remove and drain on paper towels; crumble and set aside.  Drain all but 2-3 Tbs. of the drippings.  Saute the celery and onions in the drippings until the onion is lightly browned.  Add the potatoes and water.  Move about 1/4 of the coals to the lid and simmer for 10 minutes.  Stir in the corn, milk, sausage, dill and bacon.  Continue simmering until the potatoes are tender, about 30 minutes.  Season to taste.  Serves 6.

The Finished Product

The Review

This gets an A just for the bacon, the fact that it is delicious is just icing on the cake.  The sausage also adds a really nice flavor.  It is hearty and very filling.  I served it with bread sticks and a green salad and we were all stuffed.  This is one of those recipes where you can really taste the dutch oven flavor.  And that's saying something coming from me.  I'm so used to the flavor dutch ovens add that I rarely taste it anymore (sad, I know).  You really should try this one!  Grade A.

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