Monday, February 27, 2017

Spicy Quinoa Corn Chowder

A take on corn chowder using quinoa instead of potatoes, and with a spicy kick!

On Christmas Eve we were hanging out with family at my parents' house. My cousin handed my daughter a gift that she immediately started to open. When she got some of the paper off, she saw the American Girl logo on the box and started to get really excited. Meanwhile, we are all sitting there thinking "oh no, she thinks it is a doll." There is no way it was a doll, it was a flat, square box. 
She continues to rip off the paper as we all hold our breath. Well, once she saw that the box contained her own set of cooking utensils, she screamed "YES!!!!" over and over and kept jumping up and down. BEST reaction EVER, and my cousin wins the prize for best gift ever! 

In addition to the cooking tools, we gave our daughter a set of plastic chopping knives, so she now has her own drawer in the kitchen with all of her tools. Every time she is ready to cook with me she pulls out every single tool, even if she only needs a knife and a spoon, grabs her stool and gets to work. 
The last time we cooked together we made this Spicy Quinoa Corn Chowder - a hearty yet healthy soup using quinoa in place of potatoes, and only a touch of cream. 
I like a bit of kick in my corn chowder, so the minced jalapeno adds just the perfect amount. I round it out with some chili powder and cumin for that smoky flavor. The next time you want a chowder, try using quinoa - it worked so well in this soup and one cup was a delicious and filling lunch. 
Spicy Quinoa Corn Chowder
Original Recipe by Mary Ellen of Mary Ellen's Cooking Creations

  • 1 Tbsp light olive oil
  • 1 carrot, diced
  • 1 stalk of celery, diced
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 1 jalapeno, seeds and stems removed, minced
  • 1/2 red bell pepper, diced
  • 1 clove of garlic, minced
  • 1 sm can creamed corn
  • 3/4 c frozen corn
  • 1/2 c quinoa, rinsed
  • 1 tsp each chili powder and cumin
  • 1/2 tsp each salt and black pepper
  • 4 c low sodium chicken (or vegetable) broth
  • 1/2 c light cream
  • Heat olive oil in a large soup pot or Dutch oven
  • Add the carrots, celery and onion; saute 2 minutes
  • Add the jalapeno, garlic and red pepper; saute 2-3 minutes
  • Add the frozen corn and creamed corn; stir
  • Add the quinoa and spiced, stir to combine
  • Add the broth and bring to a boil. Cover, lower heat and let simmer 15-20 minutes until quinoa has cooked through.
  • Add the cream and stir. Adjust seasoning if necessary

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