Corn & Andouille Chowder

Does anybody else love, love, love the delectable combination that is creamy and spicy? Exhibit 1: Pioneer Woman’s jalapeno poppers, which disappear whenever we make them, no matter how many we make (if you happen to have a few leftover, they’re actually quite good for breakfast the next morning). Exhibit 2: Johnny Carino’s has a spicy-creamy pasta that I’ve had like three times and tried to replicate about half a dozen. Exhibit 3: this soup.

I had some andouille sausage in the fridge that I needed to use, and I was also kind of hankering for the sweet-creamy-spicy flavors of a corn chowder, so I made a mash-up of Pioneer Woman’s corn chowder and this andouille sausage corn chowder recipe from All Recipes. I have to say, I’m pretty pleased with the outcome.

As an aside, I used the rest of a rotisserie chicken for the chicken stock and the chicken in this soup. As I was making the stock (basic recipe: combine in a crockpot a chicken carcass, one onion roughly chopped, three stalks celery roughly chopped, two carrots, 2 t fresh garlic, 2 bay leaves, 1/2 t black peppercorns, 1/2 t thyme, 1/2 t sage, 1/2 t oregano, 1 T apple cider vinegar, and simmer on low for 8-24 hours – the longer the better), Tito asked what I was doing. I responded that I was making soup out of the chicken bones, and it was not only delicious, but it also had all sorts of super healthy things in it for our stomachs and our bones. To which he responded, “Wow, that’s amazing!” He has no idea how amazing it is, that we can take something that’s essentially garbage in most households and turn it into something delicious, frugal and wildly healthy.

Anyway, here’s your corn chowder recipe. Adapt as needed according to what you have on hand, and enjoy.

Corn and Andouille Chowder
(serves 6ish)

2 andouille sausages, cut into small bite-sized pieces
1 large yellow onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
6 cups chicken stock
2 cups cooked chicken
1 can green chiles
3 cups corn
1 chipotle chile in adobo sauce
3 T corn meal or masa
1 c half-n-half or cream

Brown the andouille in a large, heavy pot (use some olive oil if the sausage doesn’t have enough grease). You want the pot and the sausage to both develop some brown, but not burn. Remove the sausage from the pot and add more olive oil and the onion. Saute the onion until translucent, add the garlic and cook another two minutes. Add all of the other ingredients except the half-n-half/cream and let simmer at least one hour. Add the cream just before serving.

This would be delicious with crusty bread. We had it with roasted pumpkin slices because I felt like we’d had enough bread that day.