I was able to strike liquid gold and make our family’s favorite corn chowder recipe as part of a sponsored post by Collective Bias.
I’m not sure if chowder is mostly a New England thing or not, but I do know that I grew up eating a lot of it. Fish chowder, seafood chowder (full of beautiful, succulent lobster), corn chowder, clam chowder, potato chowder. If it’s a chowder, it was probably served at least once. I was surprised, then, that chowder is not a staple in the diet of Kentuckians.
I wanted to introduce my husband’s family to the joys of milk- and cream-based soups and so decided to start with my corn chowder recipe. When I make them clam, fish, or seafood chowder, I want it to be on a visit to Maine with fresh Maine sea creatures. My corn chowder is also a little lighter than most others because I use 2% milk (though the bacon might make up for the use of 2%, but hey).
Now it’s on the most requested list and it’s part of our own meal rotation. We hadn’t had it in awhile so the other day I headed to Walmart to pick up everything I needed. As it’s a pretty quick recipe to toss together, I generally keep the ingredients on hand. That way if guests drop in or we just decide we’re in the mood for it, no last minute shopping trips are required.
I in no way would call myself a chef but I do have a few chef-ly habits. One of which being that I really like to have my mise en place completed before I start cooking. Mise en place is just a fancy French term for getting organized. I lay out my ingredients, do all my chopping and dicing, and get out any pan, dish, or utensil that I might need. It reduces the chance of being half-way through making something and realizing “I don’t have any cumin!” or of reaching to add the melted chocolate exactly as the mixture boils and noting you haven’t yet melted it. Oops. So I diced my veggies and cubed my Velveeta (which helps make the soup creamy in addition to cheesy) and got down to business.
- 1 lb bacon
- 2 T olive oil
- ½ medium onion, diced
- 3 stalks celery, diced
- 32 oz reduced sodium chicken broth
- 2 cans diced potatoes
- 2 cans creamed corn
- 1 can whole kernel corn
- 2 cups 2% milk
- 1 packet of country gravy mix
- 6 oz Velveeta, cubed
- In a large stockpot, cook bacon in batches until crispy. Set aside.
- Drain bacon drippings, reserving 2-3 tablespoons.
- Add olive oil and reserved bacon drippings to the stockpot and heat on medium-low. Add onions and celery and cook for 5 minutes, or until translucent.
- Pour in chicken stock and bring to a boil.
- Add diced potatoes, cover, and reduce heat to low. Let simmer 15 minutes.
- Meanwhile, in a small bowl whisk together the milk and gravy mix. Set aside.
- Uncover and add the whole kernel corn and the creamed corn.
- Pour the milk mixture in and slowly bring to a light boil.
- In batches, add the cubed Velveeta, stirring well after each addition, ensuring the cheese melts.
- When all cheese is melted, remove from heat and cover. Let stand at least 30 minutes before serving.
- When ready to eat, ladle into bowls and top with crumbled bacon.
I always buy the 2 pound loaves of Velveeta cheese because it stores really well even after being opened. So while I could have stopped with the chowder full of liquid gold goodness, I decided to make one more recipe. I’d heard a few times of a fudge recipe made with Velveeta. It was very intriguing because, you know, fudge. Made from cheese. I hadn’t previously tried my hand at making it but I figured why not. The Kraft website has the full recipe if you’d like to try it yourself.
It’s a little softer than most fudge recipes I’ve made but it doesn’t taste like biting into a square of cheese, as everyone thought it would. It’s really creamy, too, which made it a bit soft, even after freezing. It also made it really hard to photograph, so you’ll have to head over to the Kraft site and see their finished product if you’d like. But honestly – it’ll probably go so fast you wouldn’t have time to take a picture, anyway, so who cares?
What is your favorite Velveeta recipe?