Sunday, November 16, 2014

Roasted Corn and Potato Chowder (Slow Cooker)

This morning, before the sun came up, before the roosters were out and before even Dunkin Donuts was open, the alarm went off and I dragged myself out of bed. I work for a race events company, and at 5 AM, I was standing on the edges of the woods on a dark street across from a cemetery unwrapping Chewy bars and fruit snacks. It was c-o-l-d. Not just chilly. It was bitter. I had at least 5 layers on, a fleece hat, boots and gloves, and despite all of that, my hands absolutely froze. It's 9:30 PM now, and my  fingertips are still sore. It was a sorry sight.
There aren't a ton of perks that come along with cold weather. People are crankier, snow ruins your commute, usually we all get fatter - full disclosure. It's just not a redeeming time of year. But soup, yes, soup. That is something I can get down on. A wise man once said that soup is the best food because it's the only thing that can encompass so many flavors in one bite (what does he know, anyway?), but I agree. And tonight, as I thaw, I ate the last little bit of this incredibly easy soup. It was a dump-and-go (new cooking style, calling it!). Literally I poured everything into the slow cooker, added some fattening agents and the very end, and voila! The beautiful thing about this was that I used frozen tatos, corn and even peppers and onions. That was one less prep step, and I can dig it. So, next time you know you're heading out for a long day in the cold, make sure this is awaiting you at home… you won't be disappointed!

Slow Cooker Corn and Potato Chowder
32 ounces frozen potatoes, chopped
1 (24-ounce) package roasted frozen corn
2 cups chopped peppers/onions
3 tbsp all-purpose flour
6-8 cups chicken stock
1 tsp dried thyme
1 tsp dried oregano
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp onion powder
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/2 cup heavy cream
Cooked bacon
Shredded cheese
Fresh chives, chopped

1. Place potatoes, corn and flour in a slow cooker and toss to combine. Stir in remaining ingredients up to salt and pepper. Feel free to add 3/4 of the broth here, just to make sure it's not too runny.
2. Let cook on low heat for 8 hours. Stir in butter and cream last. Top with bacon, cheese and chives, as desired.

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