Dear Sun Spots: I am looking for a recipe for corn chowder which is good and fit for making and serving over the holidays. Thank you. – No Name, No Town.

Answer:
Hopefully, you and your family will enjoy one or other of the following located online at www.epicurious.com:

Corn chowder ingredients: ½ cup diced (1/4-inch) slab bacon (2 oz.; rind discarded if necessary), 2 cups diced (¼-inch) sweet onion (14 oz.) such as Vidalia, 2 large carrots, cut into ¼-inch dice (1 cup), 1 celery rib, cut into ¼-inch dice (¾ cup), 1 red bell pepper, cut into ¼-inch dice (1 cup), ½ lb. yellow-fleshed potatoes such as Yukon Gold (2 small), peeled and cut into ¼-inch dice, ½ lb. sweet potato (1 medium), peeled and cut into ¼-inch dice, 5 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth (40 fl. oz.), 2 fresh thyme sprigs, 3 cups corn (from about 6 ears), 1½ cups heavy cream, 1 teaspoon fine sea salt, 1 teaspoon black pepper. Garnish: 2 plum tomatoes, seeded and diced; finely chopped fresh chives. Method: Cook bacon in a wide 6-to 8-quart heavy pot over moderate heat, stirring frequently, until crisp, about 5 minutes. Transfer with a slotted spoon to paper towels to drain, then add onion, carrots, celery, and bell pepper to bacon fat and cook, stirring, until onion is softened, 8 to 10 minutes. Add all potatoes, broth, and thyme and simmer, covered, until potatoes are just tender, about 15 minutes. Add corn and cream and simmer, uncovered, 10 minutes. Add sea salt and pepper, then stir in bacon.

Chef Kent Rathbun created the following recipe for Crab-Corn Chowder for Epicurious’s Wine.Dine.Donate program.

Crab corn chowder ingredients: 4 ears corn, shucked, 2 tbs. olive oil, 1 pound bacon, diced, 2 medium onions, diced (about 2 cups), 8 cloves garlic, minced, 4 shallots, minced, 2 stalks celery, diced, 2 dried bay leaves, ½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, 1 cup all-purpose flour, 4 cups whole milk, 2 cups heavy cream, 2 cups Yukon gold potatoes, peeled and diced (about 2 large potatoes), 3 tbs. maple syrup (1½ ounces), 2 tbs. fresh thyme leaves (from about 4 sprigs), 2 tbs. fresh basil leaves, chopped, 2 tbs. fresh chives, chopped, 1 pound fresh lump crab meat, picked over, 1 tbs. Kosher salt, 2 tbs. freshly ground black pepper. Method: Prepare grill (moderately high heat). Brush corn with olive oil. Grill ears until kernels soften and develop grill marks, about 15 minutes. Remove from heat. When cool enough to handle, use large knife to cut kernels from cobs. Set aside. In heavy, large pot over moderate heat, sauté bacon until crisp, about 14 to 16 minutes. Add onions, garlic, shallots, celery, and bay leaves and sauté until translucent, about 7 to 9 minutes. Add butter and heat until melted, less than 1 minute. Using wooden spoon, stir in flour and cook, stirring constantly, until smooth, about 3 minutes. Lower heat to moderately low and continue to cook, stirring constantly, until paste is color of peanut butter, about 6 minutes. Whisk in milk and cream, then add potatoes. Raise heat to high and bring to simmer, then reduce heat to moderately low and simmer, uncovered, until soup thickens and potatoes are tender, about 17 to 19 minutes. Stir in maple syrup, thyme, basil, and chives. Gently stir in crab meat, corn salt, and pepper. Serve immediately. Cook’s note: Instead of being grilled, corn can be roasted in 450°F oven. Gently peel back corn husks, without breaking off, and discard silks. Push husks back into place and tie ends together with strips of outer husk or kitchen string. Place on heavy rimmed baking sheet, and roast until corn is fragrant and husks are brown, about 30 minutes. Let cool, then remove husks and cut kernels from corn.

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