Sunday, February 24, 2008

Roasted Cauliflower Corn Chowder

I have been missing for weeks and weeks. Life gets busy and blogging ends up on the back burner. That doesn't mean I have not been baking and cooking though. I actually made the Whole Wheat S'more Cookies again because they are such a big hit in my family.
What I tried this week, though, was this chowder. Josh and I wanted something very healthy and reheat-able for work. I like to make soup because the big soup pot makes enough for dinner and then three more lunches.

The recipe is from Shape and I find that they have very healthy recipes that actually taste good. Sometimes that is hard to do. What I loved about this soup was the rich flavors and how creamy it was, considering there was no cream in sight.

I am posting the altered recipe I used, as opposed to the origingal from Shape. I have been learning alot about how to make chowders that taste fattening, but really aren't and I didn't like some of the ingredients that Shape included.

So here are some tips I used:
  • Use a can of skim condensed milk for all the creaminess, and almost no fat. This is my new favorite ingredient in creamy soups. Just remember to add it at the end and not overheat it, or you will have curdling.
  • I roasted the entire head of cauliflower instead of half of it as Shape suggested. It added a real depth of flavor.
  • I didn't have fresh basil so I used 1T. of dried instead, which is not ideal but the fresh basil at my market did not look fresh enough to consume.

So enjoy this recipe. It was so delicious with a shaving of fresh Parmigian cheese on top and a crusty roll on the side.

Roasted Cauliflower and Corn Chowder
1 medium head of cauliflower
1 teaspoon olive oil
1 medium white onion, chopped
2/3 cup corn kernels (1 medium-size ear) - or one can corn kernels
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
2 medium zucchini, chopped
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 teaspoon white pepper
4 cups chicken or vegetable stock
12 ounces can skim condensed milk
3 tablespoons fresh basil, chopped

Separate cauliflower florets from the stem. Toss florets with olive oil and roast in oven at 350 degrees for about 5 minutes, or until slightly golden. Remove from oven and set aside.
In a large pot over medium heat, saute onions and corn in butter until the onions are translucent, about 5 minutes.
Add zucchini, chopped cauliflower, thyme, salt and white pepper. Cover and cook for several minutes more, stirring occasionally and adjusting heat so the vegetables don't burn.
Add stock to pot. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to a simmer and cook, covered, 20 minutes. Add the basil and milk, and adjust seasonings.
Transfer the soup in thirds to a food processor bowl and pulse so that the soup is slightly pureed with bits of vegetable remaining.