So Zucchini is the theme of August, as I am sure it is for many gardeners. We are keeping up with the zucchini that our plant is producing, but have been diving into new recipes so that our freezer isn’t full of zucchini bread. We found an amazing winner, which we thought we should share.
- 2 strips bacon
- 1 cup chopped onion
- 1.5 cup chopped celery
- 1.5 cup carrot
- 4-5 garlic cloves
- 2 tsp fresh thyme
- 2 medium russet potatoes chopped
- 4 cups vegetable stock
- 1 bay leaf
- 4 cups corn kernels, fresh if possible
- 3 cups zucchini
- 1 cup half and half
- Salt and pepper
- Cayenne pepper (optional garnish)
Chop bacon into slices to create bacon bits. In a large pot, fry off the bacon. Once browned, remove the bacon and set aside for later use as garnish. Leave the bacon fat in the pot.
Add onion, celery, carrots, garlic and thyme to the pot. Cook for approximately 5 minutes or until the vegetables start to soften, stirring frequently.
Raise the heat to medium high and add potatoes, water and bay leaf. Bring the pot to a boil then lower to a simmer for 8 – 10 minutes or until the potatoes are half cooked.
Add zucchini and corn to the pot. Season with salt & pepper to taste. Continue to simmer until the vegetables are tender, approximately 8 – 12 minutes.
Discard the bay leaf. Using a blender or food processor, transfer 2 cups of the chowder and blend/puree until smooth. Return the mixture to the pot and stir to combine. Add half and half and cook just until heated. Make sure not to leave it as the cream could burn if not stirred. Taste for seasoning and adjust as needed.
Dish up the chowder and garnish with bacon and cayenne, or any other toppings you would like. Enjoy!
CHIT CHAT PORTION
I was expecting a good soup with this recipe, but what we got was amazing. I was worried that the zucchini would water down the chowder, but that was not the case. Instead it infused more flavour into the chowder. Plus a lot of it held up, so while eating, you get to enjoy some delicious chunks of zucchini throughout.
On top of that, we were so excited because at little more than half the ingredients came from our garden. It is such a fun experience going into the garden to harvest most of the ingredients for a recipe that you will need. I am not sure if it is this fact that makes the soup taste better? Knowing that we grew all the vegetables, or if it is just that good of a recipe, but I’ll take whatever it is that makes this taste so good. I still have some corn leftover, so I may have to do up another batch to freeze for a dinner to warm up with after a cross-country ski.
If you are not a gardener yourself, but really want that “garden” experience, then I recommend hitting up a local farmers market to get all your ingredients. All the above ingredients are available this time of year (August), so you can get it nice and fresh.
I hope you enjoy!