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    Chesapeake Bay Corn and Crab Chowder

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    Chesapeake Bay Corn and Crab Chowder

    This is a traditional American chowder from Maryland and Virginia in the USA. It has a smokier and spicier taste than the "New England" style of clam and seafood chowders, and is a perfect meal for a cold, wet night. I serve it alongside pickled cucumbers, fresh bread rolls and butter. I usually add more crabmeat than 500g, and have added small prawns or scallops on occasion to give it a bit more seafood. It is always a hit with guests and with my family.

    • Total time: 45 minutes

    Serves: 6

    Ingredients

    • 100 g (4 slices) streaky bacon diced finely
      100 g chopped onions
      100 g diced celery
      3 cloves garlic, chopped
      6 Tbsp Butter
      1 cup Flour
      2 litres chicken stock
      800g potatoes, peeled, 1/2-inch dice
      Sea Salt and fresh ground pepper
      500g lump crabmeat
      1Kg sweet corn (I use frozen if no fresh available)
      1 Tbsp Tabasco Pepper Sauce
      2 Tbsp Old Bay Seasoning (may be hard to find in the UK, but you can make your own from internet recipes)
      1 Tbsp thyme
      500 ml Cream

    Method

    1. Add bacon to stockpot on MEDIUM. Cook 2-3 min, until crispy. Add onion, celery, and garlic; stir. Cook about 4 min, until soft but not browned.
    2. Add butter; stir until melted and just starting to bubble. Add flour, stirring until completely blended. Cook, stirring and scraping bottom of pan every 30 seconds, about 3 min. This is the roux. Do not overcook or burn the roux as this will make the chowder taste burnt.
    3. Whisk in chicken stock - this creates a nice thick base. Add potatoes; season to taste with salt and pepper. Increase heat to MEDIUM-HIGH. Cook, stirring occasionally, about 10 min, until it comes to a boil. Take care not to burn the bottom of the pan
    4. Reduce heat to MEDIUM. Simmer 10-15 min, until potatoes are tender. While mixture simmers, add crabmeat to clean large bowl and gently break apart, removing any pieces of shell. Set aside.
    5. Add corn, Tabasco, Old Bay, and thyme. Gradually stir in cream; return to simmer. Cook 2-3 min. Add crabmeat. Stir gently until soup is warmed through. Ladle into warmed bowls.

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