Soup and stew season is finally here! Cleansing breath in – long, relaxing breath out. Ahhhh. I love autumn. Fall. The months of October and November. I felt I needed to include all possible determinations of this season because in LA, we don’t really get fall. Or autumn. We just get the months of October and November. It is still hot here, but I will continue to behave as though we’ve moved forward into what should be cooler days and brisk evenings. I may even wear boots out tonight even though it will be in the 80’s until well after it’s dark, just to drive my point home. I LOVE FALL.
I also love chowder, but since we are non-dairy, I don’t ever, ever get to have it. Even when I cheat, I still can’t bring myself to go as far as having real chowder, what with all its
delicious cream and butter. So, I’ve developed a vegan, dairy free chowder that I’ve grown to love almost as much. It’s healthy comfort food, and it’s the perfect meal to celebrate the appearance of pumpkin patches, corn mazes, apple picking excursions and general fall merriment.
Since cream and butter are forbidden, this corn and potato chowder gets its creamy, velvety texture from pureeing some of the soup and then mixing it back in, as well as from the drizzle of coconut cream on top. If you are wondering if coconut cream is actually good on a savory chowder, stop it. It’s delicious. Just try it. And you can’t really see it in the photos, but I made some chili oil using these directions (it’s really easy) and drizzled that on top, as well. Chowder, while yummy, can become a one note meal that doesn’t really go anywhere else on your taste buds, but with the added spice of the chili oil paired with the sweet and creamy coconut, this chowder sings. It’s a must try, and I hope you do.
I’m in need of new soup and stew recipes and suggestions to celebrate fall! What do you have for me?
2 large potatoes
2 leaks, whites and light green parts only
2-3 garlic cloves, minced
4 ears of corn
1/2 large onion
4 cups vegetable stock
2 cups hot water
Coconut Cream (optional)
Chili oil (optional)
Dice the onion and slice the leeks into thin half moons. Peel the potatoes and then cut them up into small cubes, and cut the corn off the cobs. Mince garlic.
Saute the onions and leeks in a tablespoon of olive oil over medium heat until very soft and translucent and brown bits are beginning to form on the bottom of the pot. Add the minced garlic and stir around for a minute or two until the garlic is fragrant. Add the potatoes and flour and mix everything together.
Pour in the vegetable stock and two cups of hot water, and bring the pot to a simmer. When the chowder is bubbling, add the corn and cumin, stir, and simmer with the lid mostly on for about 20 minutes. Stir every once in a while so nothing sticks to the bottom. After 20 minutes, the potatoes should be very soft but not falling apart.
Blend about 4 ladles of soup in a blender or food processor until very smooth. (If you don’t have a blender or food processor, you can use a potato masher to mash most of the potatoes up right in the pot. It won’t be as creamy, but I’ve done it and it’s still good.) Pour the blended chowder back in the pot with the rest and mix everything together. Add salt and pepper and stir.
Serve hot with drizzles of coconut cream and chili oil.
Value food and cheer and song