Tuesday, March 31, 2020

Weekend Gourmet Flashback: Kitchen Sink Potato Chowder #quarantinecooking #comfortfood #soup #slowcooker #potatochowder

Is it just me...or are you craving homey, comforting food during this time of self distancing at home? If so, today's recipe needs to go to the front of your "make now" list! My Kitchen Sink Potato Chowder is comfort in a bowl...and your house will smell amazing as it cooks in your slow cooker all afternoon long. It features ingredients you likely have on hand in your kitchen -- including healthy veggies, lean turkey smoked sausage...and cheese because...CHEESE! After 20 minutes or so of chopping and assembling everything, your slow cooker does the rest of the work! Six hours later, you'll enjoy steaming bowls of this hearty chowder for dinner. If you don't have turkey sausage on hand, substitute diced ham...or even a few pieces of crispy bacon. Any of these meats will bring smoky flavor to the finished chowder.

Kitchen Sink Kitchen Chowder
adapted from Southern Food about.com 
Ingredients (makes 4-6 servings):
  • 2.5 cups peeled, diced potatoes [NOTE: I used Yukon Gold potatoes]
  • 1/2 cup diced carrot
  • 1/2 cup diced celery
  • 1 cup diced yellow onion
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely diced or grated
  • 1 cup corn kernels
  • 6 ounces turkey smoked sausage, diced
  • 4 cups chicken stock
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 1 cup half-and-half OR whole milk
  • 1 cup 2% shredded sharp cheddar cheese
  • 1 cup 2% Monterrey Jack cheese
  • 2 tbs. chopped parsley
  • Salt & pepper to taste
Step 1: Brown the turkey sausage in a medium skillet -- or use the Saute setting if you slow cooker has one. Turn the slow cooker to Low. Add the sausage, carrot, onion, and garlic to the slow cooker. Stir to combine and season with salt & pepper to taste. Add the potatoes, corn, and celery to the sausage-veggie mixture. Stir to combine all of the ingredients in the slow cooker.
Step 2: Add the chicken stock, bay leaves, and thyme sprigs to the slow cooker. Cover and cook on Low for 6 hours, until the potatoes are tender. After 6 hours, remove the lid and give the chowder a stir. Add the half-and-half and cheddar, then stir until the cheese melts. Taste and adjust the salt & pepper if necessary. Let the chowder simmer, uncovered, for 30 minutes. This allows the flavors to combine and the chowder to thicken a bit.
Step 3: To serve, ladle the finished chowder into deep bowls or soup crocks. Top with shredded Monterrey Jack cheese. I like to serve the chowder with some garlic toast or toasty French bread on the side.
We really enjoy this chowder! It's creamy, cheesy, totally filling...and very economical. Every bite features chunks of potato, smoky turkey sausage, and sweet corn. The long, slow simmer in the slow cooker allows the flavors to combine very nicely. This recipe is also a snap to double for larger families...or to freeze extra for later!

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