Chowder Recipes for All Occasions
Chowder recipes are always good, especially when they are homemade. A chowder is a type of rich soup which usually features milk or cream. Potatoes and onion are typical ingredients, and the best-known types would be seafood chowder and corn chowder. This soup is traditionally thickened with sea biscuit, although broken-up crackers will also do the job. A corn and potato chowder makes a tasty evening meal for the family, while a mixed seafood chowder is certainly elegant enough for a celebratory meal. A chowder is thick, rich and flavorful, featuring plenty of chunky texture.
What Makes Chowder So Special?
A chowder is a type of soup but it is not the same as a soup, consommé or bisque. Chowders are often creamy but there are exceptions, like Manhattan clam chowder, for example, which swaps the milk or cream for tomatoes, giving it a completely different flavor. Chowders are not pureed like some soup recipes. Instead they are supposed to be chunky. Whether you are enjoying a potato chowder made with cheese, a New England clam chowder or a hearty corn chowder recipe, this type of soup is always filling enough to serve as a main dish, and the texture is just as good as the flavor.
Different Types of Chowders
Chowders often contain seafood but that is not the only type. Corn chowder is another well-known kind, which is similar to clam chowder but made with corn instead. There are all kinds of fish chowders to choose from, and cheesy potato chowder is another delicious option. Southern Illinois chowder is a very thick chowder, almost closer to a stew than a soup, featuring a variety of meats, vegetables and a tomato-based sauce. Bermuda fish chowder features fish, tomatoes and onions, and is the island’s native dish.
Get Your Homemade Chowder Just Right
The first chowders were fishermen’s stews made with fish and seafood, but modern ones might feature corn or potatoes instead. Making chowder is easy. You will need your main ingredient, a broth or stock for the cooking liquid, potatoes, flour or cornstarch for thickening, cream, bacon or herbs to add flavor, and your chosen seasonings. You can either combine the flour and fat to make a roux, then add the stock, or you can add the starch later. These are the 2 main cooking methods for such a recipe.
More Tips for a Winning Chowder
A chowder should be very smooth and quite thick. You can add extra stock to thin it or extra starch to thicken it. Another way to thicken it is to simmer it to gelatinize the grain starches. This will only work if the chowder is simmering between 175 and 205 degrees F. Cream masks the flavors in the soup so do not add too much. If the flavor is too weak you need more of the main ingredient. If the chowder seems pasty you have too much starch in there, or the starch is not cooked enough.
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