Is it as cold and dreary where you are as it is here? Yuck. Here’s something that might warm you up.
Crab and Corn Chowder
1 onion, diced
2 ribs celery, diced
2 gloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup flour
2 bell peppers (I used 1 green and 1 red)
3 cups chicken (or seafood) stock
1 cup cream (or milk or half&half)
2 cups frozen corn
8 oz. lump crabmeat
spices (I used Old Bay seasoning and nutmeg plus a bay leaf)
1. In your large soup pot, sautee the onions, celery, and garlic in 4 tablespoons of butter (or 2 tablespoons butter, 2 tablespoons olive oil) on medium-high heat. Season generously with your spices of choice. Salt and pepper each step of the way.
2. When they start to soften, slowly sprinkle in the flour, stirring to coat all the veg and to start cooking the flour. Add the diced peppers and sautee for a couple minutes more.
Wondering why we add flour to the veggies? It’s to create a roux (pronounced roo) which is basically a mixture of equal parts fat to flour (or other thickening agent like cornstarch or arrowroot). Remember we added 4T butter and now 1/4 cup flour (1/4 cup is approximately equal to 4T FYI). By adding the flour to the veggies cooking in the fat (rather than just adding flour to some melted butter), the veggies can all work together to thicken the soup because each is coated with the flour and the butter. Once a mixture containing a roux is brought to a boil, the particles magically expand.
3. Add the chicken stock and the cream and bring to a boil. Let it bubble for a couple minutes then reduce the heat and keep at a gentle simmer.
4. Just before serving, adjust seasoning as necessary and add the corn and the crab meat, and raise the heat as necessary just until everything is heated through.
Doesn’t look like the weather is going to warm up anytime soon. Embrace the cold, and consider using this soup to help you warm up! May your chilly weather be more delightful than frightful.