Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Meatless Monday: Summer Chowder

Each Monday I try to eat only meatless meals.  Breakfast is simple – Shakeology!  Lunch is also pretty easy since I eat salads most days.  Instead of chicken or turkey I added almonds for protein.  Dinner is sometimes harder to go entirely meatless with my family.  Taking a look in my fridge I realized I had to use up the fresh corn that we got from our CSA share (as a reminder CSA is Community Sponsored Agriculture).  I am not a big fan of corn on the cob but I do like to add corn to dishes I cook.  I looked around and saw some other perfect veggies to go into a Summer  Chowder and knew just what to make. 
I’m fairly certain that I never made this Summer Chowder the same two times in a row.  Sometimes I have celery so I use it and sometimes I don’t.  That is just the way I cook.  I adapt to what I have on hand.  So use what every yummy veggies you have or whatever veggies you prefer.  If you are making this chowder in August, feel free to throw in some zucchini since we know you’ll have plenty in a few weeks!

Summer Chowder


1 tbs olive oil
1 medium red onion
2 cloves garlic
4 cups veggie stock
2 large potatoes
1 medium green bell pepper
1 medium red bell pepper (or roasted red pepper from jar)
4 cups fresh (or frozen) corn kernels
½ Cup to ¾ Cup milk  (I use 2% but I’ve made it with skim)
1/2 Tsp salt and pepper to taste
several leaves of basil


In a large stock pot heat the oil and add the onions and garlic until soft and have just a touch of color but not brown.  I just love the smell of onions and garlic cooking.  It was at this point my husband came home from work and asked, "What's for dinner?"  He loves corn chowder so he was happy when I told him!  Add the peppers and potatoes and continue to cook for a few minutes longer.   I did not have a red pepper in my garden but I did have a jar of roasted red peppers.   Since I really wanted more color in the chowder I used that instead.  Use what you have! 

Stir in the veggie stock and corn kernels and salt and pepper.  Instead of salt and pepper I use a seasoning from Penzey's Spices called Ruth Ann's Muskego Ave Chicken and Fish Seasoning.  If you don't have a Penzey's near you they are also online. I love Penzeys! 

Simmer the soup for about 15 minutes or until the potatoes are tender. Turn off the heat.   If you have an immersion blender use it to blend about half of the soup.  If not, just take about half of the soup and puree in a blender or food processor.   After you blend the chowder to what every consistency you prefer, add ½ cup of milk to the pot and stir.  You might need to add a little more if you prefer it a little lighter and creamier.  Add minced or ribbons of basil and if desired, diced tomatoes.

At less than 200 calories per serving, this made a great light dinner paired with a side salad and 1 Zucchini and Corn Cake.  It would make a perfect lunch and good thing I made enough to have leftovers despite my son eating a big bowlful and claiming that it was “delicious!” 

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