Monday, March 12, 2012

Butternut Squash and Corn Chowder

Copyright 2012 LtDan'sKitchen blogs
This is one soup that I really enjoyed making. It was simple, delicious and most important of all, can be easily made vegan. The idea of making dishes that are both healthy and delicious are becoming familiar to me. I used to think that vegan dishes tasted like sewage water but having made a few myself, they are actually not too bad. Of course, going vegan is quite hard for me but the occasional trips to Vegan land is a welcome respite especially when I have had my fill of meat-centered dishes. Sometimes, a good healthy bowl of vegetables is the the cure for the body's well-being. 

Adapted from Dave Lieberman's recipe, I made a few changes since I did not have all of the ingredients listed in the book. I did however have the basic ingredients that allowed me to substitute for the missing ingredients and still ended up with a wonderful soup that is perfect to pack for lunch at work. The soup being a chowder uses cream but this can be easily substituted with soy-based sour cream or yogurt or even coconut milk. It will taste slightly differently but it will still be equally delicious.

Butternut Squash and Corn Chowder - Adapted*

1 lb butternut squash, peeled, cored and diced
1 onion, diced
1 large jalapeno, deseeded and diced
1 tbsp flour or corn starch
2 cups vegetable broth
1/2 cup frozen corn
1 15 oz cream of corn, canned
salt and pepper
1/4 cup heavy cream or any preferred substitute
1/4 cup chopped cilantro
2 tbsp olive oil

1. Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and season
    with salt and pepper. Saute for 3-4 minutes until softened.

2. Add the squash and the flour and mix well. Let it brown slightly before
    adding the broth. Once boiling, lower the heat to a simmer and cover.

3. When the soup has thickened, add the frozen corn and the canned corn
    and mix well. Increase the heat to medium and cover.  Once it starts to
    boil, add the jalapenos and continue to cook until the squash is tender. If
    the soup gets too thick, add a little bit of broth or water.

4. Add the cream and mix well. Check for flavor and adjust accordingly.
    When ready to serve, add the cilantro and mix well. 

*Lieberman, Dave:Dave's Dinners: A Fresh Approach to Home-Cooked Meals, Hyperion, New York: 2006.

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