Corn Chowder with Sweet Potatoes and Ham
- 5 ears of corn, husks and silk removed
- 3 Tbs. unsalted butter
- 1/2 cup diced firm, baked smoked ham
- 2 1/2 cups finely chopped yellow onion
- 2 red bell peppers, seeded and diced
- 3 1/2 cups chicken broth
- 1 large sweet potato, about 1 lb., peeled and cut
into 1/2-inch cubes
- 1 tsp. salt, plus more, to taste
- 2/3 cup heavy cream
- 1/2 tsp. hot-pepper sauce, such as Tabasco
Score the kernels on the remaining 2 ears of corn by running the tip of a sharp knife down the length of the ear. Place each ear in a bowl and, using the back of a knife, scrape down the length of the ear to squeeze out the pulp from the scored kernels. Set the pulp aside.
In a soup pot over medium heat, melt the butter. Add the ham and cook, stirring once or twice, until lightly browned, about 10 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer to a bowl.
Add the onion and bell peppers to the pot, cover and cook, stirring once or twice, until tender, about 10 minutes. Add the broth, sweet potato and the 1 tsp. salt. Reduce the heat to low, partially cover and simmer for 10 minutes. Stir in the ham and corn kernels. Cover and cook until the potato is just tender, about 10 minutes. Stir in the corn pulp, cream and hot-pepper sauce. Cook just until heated through, 3 to 4 minutes. Taste and adjust the seasonings. Serve hot. Serves 8.
An exclusive online recipe adapted from Williams-Sonoma Collection Series, Thanksgiving, by Michael McLaughlin (Simon & Schuster, 2001).