This week we wanted something cozy and comforting so I made the Corn and Potato Chowder from 1000 Vegan Recipes. Delicious in its simplicity, the soup is partially pureed to add creaminess to the broth, but still has nice chunks of potatoes and lots of sweet corn kernels for a good textural contrast. You could, of course, leave the soup entirely chunky or puree it all, depending on your preference.
The textural versatility of this soup is only the beginning. You can change the flavor in a variety of ways to suit your mood. Consider this: From the same batch of soup, I served it six different ways, just by garnishing each serving with something different:
1. a drizzle of Sriracha sauce; chopped scallions (and/or cilantro or parsley)
2. vegan sour cream; chives; smoked paprika; chopped vegan bacon
3. hot or mild chopped green chiles; a splash of Tabasco
4. chopped roasted red bell pepper; minced sun-dried tomato; fresh basil leaves
5. pureed (or minced) chipotle in adobo
6. diced avocado; chopped tomato; chopped Kalamata olives
Another time when I made this soup, after about half of it was gone, I decided to stretch it further by adding a can of diced tomatoes and some cooked lima beans and it took on an entirely different character (and gave us a few more days of soup!).
Here’s the recipe for the basic soup. If you make it, I’d love to hear if you tried any of my variations or, even better, if you’ve come up with some of your own.
Corn and Potato Chowder
This recipe is from 1000 Vegan Recipes by Robin Robertson © 2009, John Wiley & Sons.
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 onion, chopped
1 celery rib, chopped
3 Yukon gold potatoes, peeled and diced
4 cups vegetable broth
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
3 cups fresh, frozen, or canned corn kernels
1 cup plain unsweetened soy milk
1 tablespoon minced green onions or chives (or garnish of choice)
1. In large soup pot, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the onion and celery. Cover and cook until the vegetables are softened, about 10 minutes. Add the potatoes, broth, and salt and pepper, to taste. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low and simmer, uncovered, until the potatoes begin to soften, about 20 minutes.
2. Add the corn and simmer 15 minutes longer. Puree about half the soup in the pot with an immersion blender, or in a blender or food processor, and return to the pot. Stir in the soy milk and taste and adjust seasonings, if necessary.
3. Ladle the soup into bowls, garnish with green onions, and serve.