Introduction: Red Pepper Corn Chowder
This is a recipe I adapted from one I got from my mother-in-law. I add red pepper and frozen corn instead of canned corn for an improved flavor and texture.
Step 1: Ingredients
12oz Package Salt Pork
1 Small Onion
3 Medium Yellow potatoes
1 Large Red Bell Pepper
1 lb Frozen Sweet Corn
2 14.75 oz Cans Cream Corn
1 qt Light Cream
1 pint Heavy Cream
2-4 shakes Tabasco Sauce
1/8 tsp White Pepper
1/2 tsp Garlic Powder
1 Bay leaf
Pinch of Cayenne
Step 2: Prepare Mise En Place
I start by chopping my vegetables and end with the salt pork. Dice the onion to about 1/4 inch, the potatoes to about 1/2 inch and the red pepper somewhere in between 1/4 and 1/2 inch. There is a thick part of skin on the slat pork that needs to be removed and discarded. Make a small slit between the meaty part and the skin and being careful not to slice to deep into the soft fat or your finger. Slice and then dice the pork to around 1/4 inch pieces.
Step 3: Start Cooking
Place an 8 qt stock pot over medium heat and allow the pot to get hot before adding anything, this helps prevent sticking. Cook the salt pork over medium heat until the fat starts to form bubbles, about 15 minutes. You will want the meaty bits to start to get a little crispy.
Next add the onions and stir frequently until they soften, about 3-4 minutes. Then add the potatoes with a pinch of salt, pepper and garlic powder. Turn the heat up to medium high and stir frequently until the potatoes just begin to soften, about 10 minutes. Add the red pepper, stir frequently until the peppers get soft making sure to scrape any bit that might stick to the bottom of the pan, about 3-4 minutes.
Note: We prefer to have soft potatoes in my chowders however if you desire to have them a little firmer then add the red peppers in at the same time as the potatoes. We also like to have a little crunch left in the red pepper again adjust the cooking time according to your personal taste and consider cutting them a little smaller.
At this point add flour a tablespoon at a time thoroughly mixing and cooking after each addition. Continue until all the ingredients start to bind together in clumps.
Step 4: Continue Cooking
Once everything has clumped together it is time to add the rest of the ingredients. Add the cream corn, frozen corn, both creams, Tabasco, bay leaf, white pepper and garlic powder. Stir occasionally until small bubbles start to form on the top as pictured above, about 15-20 minutes. Reduce heat and simmer covered for 45 minutes to an hour depending on how thick you like chowder. Continue to stir occasionally during the simmer.
Note: Add more Tabasco and/or some cayenne pepper if you want a little more spice. The amount I add is suited for other members of my family who do not like spice. Also Limit any additional salt as the salt pork is pretty salty I really only add it when the potatoes go in mostly because not seasoning potatoes just seems wrong to me.
Step 5: Serve and Enjoy
We like to serve this with corn bread. I like to add some fresh sliced jalapeno or Serrano peppers to spice it up a little.