Last week I was consumed with the idea of making a chowder. If I had to guess, I would say the word was mentioned on Downton Abbey at some point, leaving an impression in my mind so strong it almost bordered on obsessive. For days, all I could think about was the pot of bubbling milky soup I wanted to make as soon as I handed in a batch of writing assignments and a party project.
That day was last Friday, and when the boys came home from school in the afternoon I was greeted with cries of "What smells so good?" Unfortunately, for one of them, the smell was far superior to the taste, but the other lapped it up with such enthusiasm I almost thought the dog might be eating at the table. Rob and I agreed with him, although I'd like to think we were a little more refined in our consumption.
If I had a pot big enough, I would triple this recipe and make enough for us to eat for several days on end (sorry, Jackson). I also wouldn't hesitate to serve this to guests with a loaf of crusty bread and a simple green salad. It's comfort food at it's finest, and should be shared with your favourite people. Even if they think it tastes like dirty socks.
Shrimp and Potato Chowder
This recipe is adapted from one of my other favourite soups, my Corn and Cheddar Chowder.
- 1.5 lbs new potatoes, diced and unpeeled
- 4 cups water
- 1 tablespoon dried dill weed
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 5 strips of bacon
- 1 small onion, peeled and diced
- 1/2 red pepper, diced
- 3 celery stalks, trimmed and diced
- 2 carrots, peeled and diced
- 1 lb. shrimp, peeled and de-veined and cut into 1" pieces
- 1 cup of frozen corn
- 1 cup milk
- 1/2 cup cream
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- 10 grinds fresh ground pepper
Clean the potatoes and cut into a large dice. Place them in a soup pot and cover with the water, dill and salt. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 10-15 minutes.
Place the bacon in a skillet set over medium heat and cook until crispy. Remove to a paper-towel lined plate, and drain all but 1 tablespoon of the fat from the pan. Add the onion, red pepper, celery, carrots, and shrimp, and cook until the vegetables are softened. Crumble the bacon.
Once the vegetables have cooked add them to the potatoes. Also add the bacon, corn, milk, and cream. Bring to a boil and allow to bubble for 7-8 minutes. Add the chili powder and black pepper and stir well. Lower the heat and simmer for 15 minutes. Check the seasonings, and serve warm.