After living in Boston for 10 years, I ate my fair share of clam and corn “chowda.” So I wondered, how can I make a healthy chowder that has the same taste and texture of a regular chowder, but without the butter, cream and cholesterol? …Well, here it is!
1 medium onion diced
3 stalks celery, diced
1 large sweet potato or yam, peeled & diced
4 cups corn, (5 medium ears)
1 tsp. dried thyme
4 cups water or vegetable broth or 2 cups of each
1 tsp. sea salt
½ tsp. black pepper
2 Tbsp. olive oil
cilantro, finely chopped for a garnish
Note: If you are using fresh corn, after cutting off the kernels from the cob, take the back of your knife and scrape it over the cob to get the “corn milk” out. Scrape directly into the soup pot. This will add to the flavor of this chowder, especially if you only use water and not vegetable broth.
In a heavy saucepan, heat the olive oil and add onions along with a pinch of sea salt and sauté 1-2 minutes. Stir in ½ the corn and thyme. Add the water or vegetable broth and scrape the cobs for the “corn milk” into the pot, bring to a boil, cover, reduce heat, and then simmer 15 minutes.
Use either a hand-held immersion blender or regular blender, and puree the chowder. After it is pureed, put back into the pot unless you blended it in the pot. Add approximately ½ – 1 teaspoon of sea salt and ½ tsp. of black pepper, depending on taste. Add sweet potato or yam, along with the celery and remainder of the corn.
Cover and cook an additional 15-20 minutes, or until potatoes are soft. Salt and pepper to taste. Garnish with fresh cilantro and serve.