I’ve recently come to the conclusion that I’m a bit of a soup snob.
I’m not sure that I knew such a thing existed until the day I shoved a spoonful of canned soup into my mouth and cringed from the awful, artificial flavor. I’ve spent countless hours chopping fresh veggies and throwing them into a pot full of herbs and spices, covering them in broth and letting it all simmer until my entire home is filled with the comforting aroma of home-cooked soup.
Tonight, I opted for a vegetarian corn chowder, which was a bit of a juxtaposition of this Vegan Quinoa Corn Chowder and Corn and Cheese Chowder from Anna Thomas’ Love Soup, an amazing vegetarian cookbook full of mouth-watering soups.
I would have kept it vegan, if I’d had some sort of milk and cheese substitute on hand, but I was fresh out and really craving something creamy and cheesy. Here’s what I came up with.
- 1 medium onion, diced
- 1 red bell pepper, diced
- 2 cloves of garlic, diced
- 1 package of frozen sweet corn
- 6 cups of vegetable broth
- 2 bay leaves
- 1/2 tsp dried sage
- 1 1/2 tsp cumin
- 1 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
- 1 sweet potato, diced
- 1/3 cup quinoa
- 2 tbsp butter
- 1 tbsp whole wheat flour
- 1 cup milk
- 4 oz sharp cheddar cheese, grated
- 1/4 cup grated parmesan
Make it Happen
Saute onions, bell peppers and garlic over medium high heat till soft, adding a pinch of salt and half teaspoon of black pepper. Add corn and stir. Pour in broth and add bay leaves, sage, cumin, paprika, sweet potato, and quinoa. Bring to a boil and then turn down heat to simmer for about 20 minutes.
In a small saucepan over medium heat, melt butter and whisk in flour. Keep whisking for about a minute, and then slowly add the milk, continuing to whisk until mixture is smooth. Pour this into your soup and stir.
Gradually add the cheese, a handful at a time, and stir between handfuls. At this point, you don’t want to turn the heat up again because the milk and cheese will get all lumpy on you. Add the Parmesan cheese and continue to stir. Add more salt and pepper to taste. Eat this up with some crusty bread, mmm!