Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Smoky Chipotle Chili Corn Chowder Recipe

chipotle corn chowder

Sweet corn has already arrived in California supermarkets. Despite its good looks -- plump, creamy white kernels -- it needs a bit more time to develop its characteristic sweetness. It's ideal, however, for soups like this Smoky Chipotle Chili Corn Chowder, which I have already made twice in the last eight days.

This is a deliciously simple recipe: Within minutes, you'll be enjoying a bowl of rich, buttery corn chowder spiked with fiery chipotle chilis and bits of salty, smoky ham. It pairs particularly well with warm spiced tortillas or a thick slab of cornbread. For a vegetarian option, simply omit the ham, but keep the tortillas.

Smoky Chipotle Corn Chowder
Makes 4 servings.
Print recipe only here.

1 tablespoon butter
3 green onions, thinly sliced, plus extra for garnish
2 cups red bliss potatoes, peeled and chopped
2 cups vegetable broth
2 cups fresh corn kernels (2 medium ears) (or canned or frozen)
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons chipotle chilis in adobo sauce
2 cups milk (whole or low-fat)
1/4 cup Monterey Jack cheese, shredded
1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped, plus extra for garnish
1/3 cup diced cooked ham (about 3 ounces)

In a deep pot over medium-high heat, melt butter. Saute green onions for 5 minutes, or until lightly browned. Add potatoes and broth, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low; add corn kernels, salt, and chipotle chilis, and stir well. Cook until potatoes are tender, about 15 minutes. Add the milk, Monterey Jack cheese, and cilantro. Turn off heat and allow chowder to cool for 5-10 minutes.

Puree soup in two batches until smooth, and return to the pot over medium-low heat. Stir in cooked ham and warm until thoroughly heated. Taste it; adjust seasonings accordingly. Garnish each serving with some finely chopped cilantro and green onions.

Note: This soup tastes even better the next day. So it's a good meal to make over the weekend for a quick and easy mid-week dinner.

**Chipotle chilis in adobe sauce are available at Mexican specialty markets as well as in the Mexican section of most major supermarkets. If you can't find them, then substitute 2 tablespoons of chipotle chili powder and 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper. Taste and adjust accordingly.

You might also like:

New England Clam Chowder

African Sweet Potato and Peanut Soup

Sauteed Corn with Mint, Butter, and Lemon

More recipes for corn chowder:
Corn Chowder at One For the Table
Red Bell Corn Chowder at Rookie Cookie
Chicken Corn Chowder at melecotte