Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Corn & Bacon Chowder W/ Seared Jumbo Scallops

Chowder or Chowdah. However you say it, it's delicious. Most of you know the version of clam chowder that New Englander's love, but few know about the corn chowder, which is my personal fave. The sweetness of the corn just tickles your senses and the savory bits of bacon throughout don't hurt either. Plus, I've never met a bacon I didn't like! The seared scallops were pretty to look at, and quite amazing. It's now September, so these hearty soups need to help keep us warm, because before you know it, the dreaded bitch of a winter will be here.

Ingredients: (adapted from Food & Wine May 2003 issue)

5 slices, thick cut Black Forest bacon
1 medium sized onion, finely diced
2 celery ribs, finely diced
1 15 oz. bag frozen corn (3 cups)
3 cups milk
1 lb red potatoes, diced
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/2 handful of chives, minced
salt and freshly ground black pepper
Frank's Red Hot Sauce to taste
6 jumbo sea scallops

Cook bacon in a large saucepan until crisp, about 10 minutes. With a slotted spoon, take out bacon and place on paper-towel lined plate and reserve. Save 2 tablespoons on the bacon fat for searing the scallops. Then add celery and onion to saucepan and wilt down for about 12 minutes.

While onion and celery are softening, puree 1 cup of the frozen corn with 1 cup of the milk. Add puree to saucepan along with remaining corn and milk. Also add in potatoes. Simmer until the potatoes are tender, about 25-30 minutes on low to medium heat. Then stir in chives, bacon, salt, pepper, and hot sauce. Keep warm on low temperature.

Heat bacon fat in separate pan on high heat.

Season scallops with salt and pepper and sear both sides for about 1 & 1/2 minutes per side.

Put soup in bowls and top with nicely browned scallops. Enjoy!

This was tasty and hit the spot!

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