I love Sundays in the fall.
The sky is blue today, the trees still clinging to their vibrant leaves. A layer of early morning fog brought with it a chill that reminded me that it’s slipper season.
Sundays in the fall are for reading the newspaper in bed. They are for football and for baking something cinnamony and for folding laundry in my jammies.
Sundays in the fall are for being lazy. They are for counting the days left between NOW and “I DO” (13) and savoring the downtime before the chaos.
And Sundays are for eating leftovers of my delish Chicken Corn Chowder.
This time of year, I love making big batches of soup- a bowl full of comfort for today, with enough left to stash in the freezer for later in the winter. This chowder is perfect for that!
I’ve been juggling various chicken/corn/potato chowders for years, and finally morphed multiple recipes into this awesome one. As far as chowders go, it’s a tad lighter- the texture is chunky and creamy/brothy instead of thick and heavy. But I wouldn’t go so far as to call it a “healthy” chowder. It starts where many perfect recipes start: with BACON.
While the bacon sizzled away in a large stock pot, I chopped up lots of veggies- onion, red bell pepper, yellow squash, and potatoes. I got some garlic and jalapeno ready for action, too.
The veggies like the drippings from the bacon, which gets set aside until later. I cooked the onion, peppers, and squash for a bit, then added the garlic and some fresh thyme. I sprinkled in some garlic salt and crushed red pepper, then added a bit of flour and stirred. Time for some chicken stock, the potatoes, and more thyme. I tossed in a couple of bay leaves and let it simmer away.
Sometimes, when making a soup using chicken stock, I toss in a cube of chicken bouillon. It adds a ton of flavor.
While the soup simmered on the stove, I chopped up the bacon and also some chicken (from a rotisserie bird). After the potatoes are done, it’s time to start adding the rest of the ingredients: a can of creamed corn, some frozen corn kernels, a cup of heavy cream, the jalapeno, the chicken and bacon, and some chopped green onions.
Another ten minutes on the stove is really all it needs. The chowder is chunky- there are a lot of great bites in there! I served it with some fresh thyme on top and a crunchy seed bread on the side for dipping.
The best thing about homemade soups is that they get better the next day. Hello, leftovers!
That leaves me time to enjoy the day, to read a magazine in the glorious fall light and get excited about our just-booked honeymoon to Tahiti!
When we return, just before Thanksgiving, it could very well look like this in Utah:
And when it does, I will be glad after a day of snowboarding or hiking with Cholula to pull some Chicken Corn Chowder out of the freezer and have a super-easy, cozy meal.
Because that’s what Sundays in winter are for.
Chicken Corn Chowder
- 10 bacon slices
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 2 medium onions
- 3 cloves garlic, chopped
- 2 bell peppers, chopped (red or yellow)
- 2 medium yellow squash
- 1 jalapeno, chopped
- ¼ cup flour
- 2 tablespoons fresh thyme, divided
- crushed red pepper to taste
- 1 ½ lbs chopped potatoes
- 2 bay leaves
- 8 cups chicken stock (plus a cube of bouillon)
- 1 can cream-style corn
- 1 16 oz. bag frozen corn kernels
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 3 cups diced chicken (one rotisserie)
- ½ cup green onion
- Cook bacon in a large pot until crisp. Remove and set aside, retaining ¼ cup of bacon drippings in the pot.
- Add butter to pot. Sauté onion on medium-high heat for 4-5 minutes, then add bell pepper and squash. Cook for a few minutes, then add garlic, ½ of the thyme, crushed red pepper, salt and pepper. Add flour and cook, stirring, for a minute or two. Add chicken stock, then potatoes and the remaining thyme. Add bay leaves, reduce heat to medium-low, and simmer for 10-12 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Add creamed corn, frozen corn, the heavy cream, jalapeno, chicken, chopped bacon, and green onion. Simmer 10-15 minutes. Remove bay leaves, and season with salt and pepper to taste.
Serve with fresh thyme on top, and don’t forget the crusty bread for dipping. YUM.