Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Sweet Potato, Ham and Corn Chowder

Sweet Potato, Ham and Corn Chowder - made December 26, 2017 from Cooking Classy
This is the time of year when I temporarily switch my blog away from desserts and focus on “real food”. Not always necessarily “healthier” food but considering I normally live on takeout and easy-to-prepare (i.e. “microwave”) food, anything I cook myself that’s edible is a step up.

I’m happy to say this recipe is not only edible but is surprisingly delicious. The surprise is more that I cooked it, not that I expected the recipe to be bad. It has all the elements I love in a chowder: creamy soup base, sweet potato, ham and corn. And it’s easy to make! You know that’s important for the cooking-impaired like myself.
The hardest part, which wasn’t hard at all, was prepping the ingredients. Dice the onions, slice and cube the ham and the sweet potatoes, follow the rest of the recipe as is. Super easy. This is best served and eaten within a day or two of making it. I ended up portioning most of it into Ziploc containers and freezing them. When I did thaw one to eat at a later date, the water separated a bit but just heat it up and stir back to a more even consistency and you’re fine.
1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
1 1/4 cups chopped yellow onion
1 cup peeled and diced carrots (I left it out)
1 cup diced celery (I left it out)
1 cup chopped bell pepper (I left it out)
1 tablespoon minced garlic (3 cloves)
2 15-ounce cans low-sodium chicken broth
3 cups 1/2-inch peeled and diced sweet potatoes, about 1 large
1 teaspoon dried basil
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
salt and freshly ground black pepper
5 tablespoons unsalted butter, diced into 1-tablespoon pieces
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
3 cups whole milk
1 1/2 cups diced cooked hickory smoked ham
1 1/2 cups frozen corn
1/2 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
  1. Heat olive oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Add in onions, carrots and celery; saute 4 minutes.
  2. Add in bell pepper and garlic; saute 1 minute longer.
  3. Add in chicken broth, sweet potatoes, basil and thyme; season with salt and pepper to taste.
  4. Bring mixture to a boil then reduce heat to medium-low and simmer until sweet potatoes and vegetables are tender, about 15-20 minutes.
  5. Meanwhile, melt butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add in flour and cook, whisking constantly, 1 minute.
  6. Pour milk into flour mixture, stirring constantly, and bring mixture to a light boil; remove from heat.
  7. Stir ham and corn into soup once veggies are tender and heat through, about 2 minutes. Stir milk mixture into soup. Stir in cheddar cheese and parsley. Serve warm.

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