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Corn chowder is a thick soup with corn as the main ingredient. It can contain onion, celery, carrots, potatoes, milk, bacon or chicken.

Recipes for corn chowder date to the late 1800s. A recipe published in the "Boston Cook Book" dates to 1884. In 1896, Fannie Farmer’s "The Boston Cooking-School Cook Book" published a corn chowder recipe that used canned corn, salt pork, potatoes, and crackers.

Soups and chowders make great cold weather meals. I do not keep too many canned soups on hand and prefer soups made from scratch. Usually I will make enough for more than one meal.

Last week, I made a pot of Potato, Bacon and Corn Chowder. Many of the ingredients were home grown. I had frozen corn, potatoes in the cellar, and onions still in the garden, so it was a simple meal to assemble.

Potato, Bacon and Corn Chowder makes an excellent meal during these colder months when we need warming food to keep the chill away, but there are other reasons to like today’s recipe. It is quick and easy to prepare.

Made with healthy ingredients, it is a great way to get nutrients and fiber. It will help you feel fuller for a longer period of time. When it comes to serving, it is as simple as ladling it into a bowl.

Potato, Bacon and Corn Chowder

Ingredients:

¼ pound bacon, cut into ½-inch pieces

2 carrots, diced

4 stalks celery, chopped

2 cups broth (vegetable, ham or chicken)

2 large potatoes, peeled and diced

1 cup corn kernels

1 bay leaf

2 tablespoons butter

2 tablespoons flour

2 cups milk

Paprika

Preparation:

Cook the bacon pieces in a skillet until crispy. Remove bacon, leaving grease in pan. Stir in the carrots and celery and cook for 5 minutes.

Add the broth, potatoes, corn, and bay leaf. Simmer on medium-low heat until potatoes are tender.

Meanwhile, melt butter in a saucepan. Whisk in the flour. Slowly whisk in the milk and bring to a simmer and cook until white sauce is slightly thickened. Add this to the broth and vegetable mixture and stir to combine completely. (Add more milk, if necessary, to achieve desired consistency.)

Ladle soup into bowls and garnish with cooked bacon and a sprinkle of paprika.

For questions about recipes or other information, contact Susan Maslowski at mudriverpottery@aol.com or go to metrokanawha.com. Susan also has a Farmer’s Table Facebook page.