This Creamy Roasted Poblano Corn Chowder is a healthy vegetarian soup that’s creamy and robust with a medley of tender potatoes, corn, and mirepoise vegetables. Poblanos add a mild heat tempered by the sweetness and semi-creaminess of the corn. Finish off this citrus twist with a squeeze of lime. This is a great recipe to pack in the veggies and serve up a wholesome, flavorful main dish that’s great reheated.
Last weekend we successfully hosted a house full of family. my parents and mark’s parents were at the weekend celebrating my mother and mother-in-law’s birthday on saturday. Even though they’re essentially a year apart (and not related), we’re pretty much convinced the girls are twins 😉 My brother, my niece, and my nephew joined a REALLY full house on Saturday! I made a huge breakfast featuring Paula Deen’s homemade cinnamon rolls, which are always a treat and always worth the effort. It was the perfect way to celebrate loved ones AND a hugely successful variety show 😉!
This week is busy with something (mostly work) every night this week and book club tonight. I look forward to the weekend and NO ALARMS or commitments for 2 straight days. It will be short lived as the outdoor soccer season starts next weekend and I am going on a 2 weekend trip. Mark and I are going to sneak in on a Saturday night date and enjoy some early hockey games against each other on Sunday night.
REGISTER FOR THIS RECIPE
- Heat-wary pepper lovers. Poblano peppers are on the lower end of the Scoville Heat Units (SHUs) range of 1,000-2,000 Scoville Heat Units (SHUs), a far cry from the most flavorful peppers that come in at over 1,000,000 SHUs. Poblanos are a favorite of Mexican chiles and offer a beautiful dark green color and a mild, smoky flavor. Roasted traditionally, as in this recipe, brings out that delicious smoky flavor. This is the perfect level of heat for those who may not tolerate spicy foods very well.
- Comfort food lovers, this one’s for you! Spring is here, but temperatures are still a bit high and low here in the Midwest. Don’t forget that comfort food is always in season (in your opinion, anyway!).
- One pot delights are always in season and always welcome in my kitchen. Cooked all in one Dutch oven or large pot, this recipe makes for limited dishes and cleanup (especially if you can use a gas range instead of a stove top broiler and an immersion blender instead of a blender. More on that below).
KEY INGREDIENTS AND SUBSTITUTIONS
- Poblano pepper. These are mild green chiles that are often found in the produce section of the grocery store next to jalapenos. Offering mild to medium heat, they are definitely the best option in this recipe. That said, New Mexico chiles will be the best substitute for poblanos.
- Oregano. Use Mexican oregano if you can find it. you’ll need half as much as the recipe calls for, as Mexican oregano gives a stronger, earthier flavor. I can never find Mexican oregano, so I actually adapted the recipe to use traditional oregano.
- Corn. To keep things simple, this recipe calls for corn, which isn’t often in season for soup. That said, fresh sweet corn or leftover corn cut from the cob is a great option in this recipe. A pinch of canned corn will work. a low-sodium or no-salt variety would be best. You will need approximately 3 1/2 cups of corn kernels when you use the corn version.
- Half – half. Any creamy, fat-containing liquid will work here. Unsweetened coconut milk, soy milk, 2% milk, whole milk, half and half, and heavy cream are good options.
- Vegetable broth. Low sodium and vegetarian options are used in the recipe to keep the sodium in check and the recipe vegetarian. That said, you can certainly use chicken broth or beef broth or stock if you prefer.
- Potato. Yukon Gold potatoes are low to medium starch potatoes and are slightly sweeter than some other potatoes. Uniquely, they are all roughly the same size, unlike many other types of potato. Yukon gold potatoes prefer refrigerator temperatures (40-50 degrees F) and may not keep as long as other potatoes. I love using them in soup recipes, but please use your favorite potatoes, a pound of which you choose will work great. Potatoes are not too picky this way
- Butter. There’s something about butter that goes so well with corn and potatoes, but olive oil or ghee would work great here, too.
- Vegetables. In addition to corn, potatoes, and poblanos, this recipe uses mirpooks, but feel free to add extra bell peppers (green or red peppers would be great), mushrooms, zucchini, and more. The sky is the limit. with vegetables that can be added.
- Vegan version. To make this recipe vegetarian, use ghee instead of butter, a preferred dairy-free and sugar-free milk substitute, and omit the cheese.
- With more than 5 grams of fiber per serving, this soup is a good source of fiber.
- To further reduce sodium, or for those following a low salt/low sodium diet, omit the salt or consider using a salt substitute if desired.
DIFFERENCES, STORAGE AND TIPS
- Poblanos are roasted to achieve a charred outer skin, most quickly and easily achieved over an open flame. If you are lucky enough to have a gas stove, use it. The peppers will make a crackling sound as they burn. Be sure to turn on your hood vent to limit lingering charcoal smells.
- The puree step of the recipe is optional, but it creates a creamy soup. I would definitely recommend this move.
- Fat-free options like almond milk and skim cow’s milk will curdle when added to hot dishes like soup. Adding fat slowly and little by little helps with this.
- While the recipe calls for fresh cilantro and lime as a finish to this soup, sour cream or plain Greek yogurt and/or real tortilla chips would be just as fun a finish.
- Store the soup in the refrigerator after it has cooled to room temperature. Heat several portions on the microwave, stirring frequently.
6 large poblano peppers
3 tablespoons of butter
2 onions, chopped
2 stalks celery, chopped
2 carrots, peeled and diced
4 cloves of garlic, minced
1 (16-ounce) bag frozen corn (about 3 1/2 cups)
1 pound Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and diced into ½-inch pieces (about 5 potatoes)
5 cups low-sodium vegetable broth, divided
2 bay leaves
1 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp ground coriander
2 tbsp dried oregano
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 cup half and half
1 cup (4 oz.) shredded mild cheddar cheese
fresh lime wedges, for serving (optional)
chopped cilantro for serving (optional)
- Place the poblanos on a grater set on medium-high, turning every 1-2 minutes, until charred on all sides. Alternatively, preheat the oven broiler and place the peppers on a baking sheet on the top rack of the oven, cooking for 5 minutes per side. Transfer the charred peppers to a plastic bag or bowl lined with cling film or aluminum foil to cool and “sweat” the peppers so they come out of the skins easily, about 5 minutes.
- Scrape off as much of the charred skin as possible and chop to remove the stem, skin and seeds; chop the pepper.
- Meanwhile, melt the butter in a large pot or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. After heating, add onion, celery and carrot. Cook for 5-6 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add garlic and mix; cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds.
- Add potatoes, stock, bay leaf, salt, cumin, coriander, oregano, and black pepper; mix.
- Increase the heat and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low, cover, and cook for 10 minutes, until the potatoes are fork-tender.
- Remove bay leaves and scoop out 4 cups of steam and transfer to a blender to puree; return the puree to the pot. Alternatively, use an immersion blender for 10-15 seconds or until desired consistency is achieved, making sure most of the potatoes and corn remain tender.
- Add chopped poblanos, half-and-half, and cheese; stir and simmer for 5 minutes.
- Serve warm and garnish with cilantro and lime, if desired.
Serving size. 2 cups
Amount per serving.
Calories. 342:Total fat. 14.8 gCholesterol. 42 mgSodium. 822 mgCarbohydrates. 44.3 gFiber. 5.0 gSugar: 12.8 gProteins: 12.7 g
Love a hearty soup…always!
Weekly menu: April 2-6
- Sunday. Trader Joe’s Mandarin Chicken with Rice and Cucumber
- Monday. Pesto Linguine with Roasted Asparagus, Broccoli and Shrimp
- Tuesday. Soba Noodles with edamame
- Wednesday. Book club for me, leftovers for the family
- Thursday. French toast with blueberry compote and sausage
to be good