Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Corn Chowder w/Spanish Shrimp & Chorizo

This was a dish that took a bit of time to prepare, with several components. Wondering what I should cook for dinner, this last week before payday, I looked in the cupboards, and freezer and came up with this. Using some frozen easy peel shrimp, and a link of some natural cured chorizo (used in the paella last month, stuck a link in the freezer), I thought that a nice bowl of hot, and spicy corn chowder would be in order. We had spent the weekend at the lake sailing, on the mountain hiking, enjoying the last of summer, and woke up yesterday morning to snow on the mountain. Yes, a bowl of something warm would be good.

I scoured the internet for some ideas and this is what I came up with:
Component 1: the "nice" veggies; small dice potato, celery, onion. Simmered the potatoes in salted water, then when partway done, added the celery and onion, and frozen corn. Towards the end of cooking, I crumbled up some red chili leftover from farmer's market, it had dried out sitting in a bowl on the counter. Cook until potatoes were just barely tender. (they will finish cooking later) Save the cooking water.

Component 2: pureed vegetables; package of frozen corn (from farmers market), clove of garlic, the rough cuts and ends from the nicely diced potatoes, celery, and the other half of the onion; covered with salted water, simmer. Added the cooking water from the diced veggies. Added oregano, marjoram. Simmered the "heck" out of it. Strained, saving the liquid, and put the solids through a food mill.

Component 3: Stock; let the stock settle, took the broth from the top. Cleaned the shrimp, putting the shells into the stock, simmer. Strain.

To make the chowder:
Diced salt pork, render. When crispy, add the nicely diced, parcooked veggies to the pot. Stir to evenly coat, let saute for a minute. Add the stock, add more water if needed. Stir, scraping the bits off the bottom of the pot. Add the pureed vegetables, finish with whipping cream. Taste for seasonings.

Spanish Shrimp and Chorizo:
Made a paste with: garlic clove, oregano, dried chili flakes, salt. Added smoked and regular paprika to make a paste.

Heated oil in a saute pan, when hot, added paste. Tossed in sliced chorizo (cured, not fresh), and shrimp. Saute until done, this took just a few minutes.
Use to top chowder.
I served a crusty, buttery dinner roll I made earlier in the day, reheated in the oven while making the chowder.

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