I know, I know, it’s hot, muggy, and definitely not the best time to be stuck in the kitchen slaving away over a hot stove, but dinner’s not going to make itself and around here, dinner isn’t an option — it’s the rule. Still, why in the world would I chose to make a new chowder of all things?
For one, with all the wonderful vegetables coming out of the garden, I had to find a way to use them other than just as a side dish. I know I’ll have frozen vegetables to enjoy this winter, but putting the fresh, just-picked ones right in the pot is more fulfilling than I can possibly explain.
This chowder is thick, rich, and more filling than any soup I make. Hubby was only able to eat one bowl and two pieces of crusty bread. The rest of us barely finished a smaller serving and one piece of bread.
Cheddar & Ham Vegetable Chowder
6 Slices Thick Cut Bacon, diced
1 Large Onion Chopped
1 Cup Diced Carrots
1/2 Cup Chopped Scallions
5 Tbsp. Flour
4 Cups Milk, divided
1 1/2 Cups Water
3 Cups Cubed Potatoes
1 Cup Corn
3/4 Cup Fresh Peas
3 tsp. Vegetable or Chicken Bouillon
3 Cups Shredded Cheddar Cheese
2 Cups Cubed Fully Cooked Ham
- Cook bacon until crisp. Remove bacon from pan and drain on paper towel. Add onion, carrots, and scallions to bacon fat in pan and saute until tender. Stir in flour until blended. Gradually add 3 cups milk and stir until thick. Stir in water and again stir until thickened.
- Transfer flour and milk mixture to a stock pot and bring to boil. Add potatoes, corn, peas, bouillon, and pepper to taste. Reduce heat and simmer uncovered for 20 minutes or until potatoes are tender. Be careful to keep an eye on this so it does not burn.
- When potatoes are tender, add cheese and ham. Stir constantly until cheese is melted. Stir in bacon and serve.
This soup was a real hit! Even Grace’s boyfriend, who happened to stop by after work right around the dinner hour loved it. He told Grace he could have eaten the entire pot — now that would have been something to see.
The carrots, peas, and scallions from the garden, as well as the corn that I took from the last bag of Michigan corn I froze last fall, really made this chowder pop. I might even try omitting the ham next time and just enjoy the vegetable medley. Definitely a meal in itself, and for this I am — Simply Grateful.