Tuesday, May 17, 2005

chicken and corn chowder

2 tbs butter
1 large onion, chopped
1 small red bell pepper, chopped
1 small yellow bell pepper, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tbs flour
5 cups chicken stock
2 cups butternut squash (peeled, seeded, diced)
2 cups russet potatoes (peeled, diced)
1 tbs chopped fresh thyme leaves
2 cups frozen corn kernels
½ cup cream
2 ½ cups shredded roast chicken (skinned)
salt and pepper

In a large pot, melt butter over medium-high heat. Add onions, peppers and garlic; sauté until onions are soft and translucent. Sprinkle flour over cooked onions and peppers and stir, cooking for about 2 minutes. Add in the chicken stock and stir to incorporate the flour. Add squash, potatoes and thyme; bringing to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until potatoes are cooked and tender. Add corn and cream and simmer for another 10 minutes. Add chicken and, simmer for 5 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Garnish with a drizzle of cream.

Taking stock: Making chicken stock may take time, but involves very little effort. In a stockpot, place the bones and any leftover bits of meat, excluding visible fat and skin, from a whole chicken. Cover with cold water and bring to a boil over med-high heat. Reduce heat and simmer slowly, skimming off impurities as they appear, about 30 minutes. Add 1 coarsely chopped onion, 1 peeled and coarsely chopped carrot, 1 coarsely chopped stalk of celery and a bouquet garni (tie together a small bunch parsley, 8 sprigs thyme, 1 bay leaf). Simmer, uncovered, for 3 hours, adding more water as needed to keep contents covered. Strain, allow to cool, then refrigerate. Remove the fat (which will rise to the surface and congeal) before using.

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