Posts Tagged ‘Chowder’

JT enjoyed a soup similar to this at the Ritz Carlton Toca in Toronto on his birthday and I told him I would replicate it as soon as the Ontario corn was available.
To be truthful, I made this very soup when our dear friends Barb and Kevin (Profiteroles and Ponytails) spent a weekend at the cottage, but I forgot to take photos and I know better than to post a recipe sans photos so I had to make it again, this time with notes and photos! The soup I made for Barb and Kevin used a combination of white corn and fresh Peaches and Cream Corn. The white corn was part of my shopping spree with Chgo John From the Bartolini Kitchens. I didn’t include the white corn in this recipe because I found it too starchy tasting and decided it didn’t enhance the soup at all, so my second attempt used only fresh Peaches and Cream Ontario Corn.
It’s creamed but there is not a spot of cream in it; the inherent texture of the corn makes it velvety smooth and you really don’t need cream at all.
Crab and corn are a match made in heaven and turns this simple soup into a meal, avocado added to anything really ups the ante! We grilled the corn on a charcoal grill to enhance the smoky flavour, but if you can’t grill it, just add it to the pot and cook the kernels a bit longer. Frozen corn also works well in a pinch, but shhhhhh — that’s our little secret!


Creamed corn, avocado, crab and more corn. YUM!

Creamed Corn Chowder with Avocado and Crab

(makes about 3 to 4 cups depending on how thick you wish the soup to be)


  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 cup Vidalia onion finely chopped
  • 2 1/2 cups charcoal grilled corn
  • 1 bacon rasher
  • 1 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp smoked paprika (optional if you can’t grill the corn)
  • 1 tin crab meat with whole legs
  • 1/2 small avocado, in cubes and sprinkled with lime juice
  • juice of one lime
  • 2-3 tbsp chopped cilantro
  • 500-1,000 mL vegetable or chicken stock
  • 1-2 tbsp olive oil
  • Sea salt to taste


  1. Grill fresh corn on a charcoal grill. Slice off kernels and reserve.
  2. Heat a pan with olive oil and sauté the bacon adding the onions and cooking until translucent, add the garlic, cumin and smoked paprika (if using).
  3. Add all the corn kernels but 1/2 cup (set aside for the garnish)
  4. Add stock and purée until smooth with an immersion blender, adding stock until desired thickness is achieved. Season with sea salt to taste.
  5. Press through a fine sieve.
  6. In a small bowl, combine drained crab, corn, cubed avocado, chopped cilantro and freshly squeezed lime juice. Season with sea salt to taste. Stir well.
  7. Ladle hot soup into bowls and garnish with a generous spoonful of the crab mixture in the centre. Serve with a grilled crostini on a deck over looking the lake. That last bit is optional, but it does enhance the experience.

We eat out on the deck as much as possible.


May I offer you a bowl?

We’ve been spending a lot of time at the cottage this August and I thought I’d share a few of the meals we’ve been enjoying. Cottage is for laid back times, but that doesn’t mean soup out of a can or even ready made products, for me it’s time to really enjoy having time to do things right.


I made a pulled pork Tenderloin in the slow cooker and it provided a variety of meals such as pulled pork flatbread.

The pulled pork recipe can be found here.


A wonderful hors d’œuvres of seared scallop wrapped in Prosciutto on Avocado paste smeared crostini.

Click here. for this tasty recipe.


A nice lunch of deconstructed Caesar Salad, with avocado and Canadian Bacon

Links can be found here and here.


Mulligatawny Soup with Shrimps. This soup transformed itself into BBQ sauce (add vinegar and brown sugar and a dash of soy sauce), and to Shakshuka (a middle eastern tomato based egg dish).

Muligatawny recipe can be found here.
Shakshuka recipe can be found here.
I made the BBQ sauce on the fly, so there is no recipe!

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A couple of months ago, fellow food blogger Charles blogged about a Bouillabaisse recipe and that inspired me to want to make one of my own. It’s finally getting chilly here in Toronto so it’s definitely soup weather!

In 2008 we were fortunate enough to travel with our dear friends Paul and T to Europe. We traveled for 15 days from Vienna to Budapest (I have family there) to Venice to Provence and finally to Paris. We ate, drank and lived like kings and queen’s and had an amazing time. In Marseille I ate the most wonderful fish soup and through Charles’ inspiration, I shall try to recreate my version of this famous Provençal Soup.

Paul, Eva and Theresa sitting on a ledge at Notre-Dame de la Garde

View from Notre-Dame de la Garde

On Charles’ blog post I mentioned that I have a secret ingredient. Are you ready? I keep a zip lock bag in my freezer. Wow! Crazy isn’t it? Every time I make shrimp and clean the shells/tails from them (raw), I drop them into this baggy instead of tossing them in the compost bin. Over the summer, I have accumulated quite a lot. Also, if we have lobster or crab which we did, I always save the shells and drop them into this baggy. This is going to be my flavour base.

The secret ingredient

Because I wanted to keep relatively true to the origin of the soup, I based my recipe on Epicurious because it read like the one I had in Marseille, although I have altered it to our taste. The recipe makes 8 servings, so I will cool and freeze 6 servings for future use. The fresh seafood will be for 2 servings and I will deal with it in the final cooking and assembly stage.

Everybody in the pot!


  • 250g or 2 medium leeks (white and pale green parts only), cleaned and chopped
  • 1 large fennel bulb, stalks discarded, reserving fronds for garnish, and bulb chopped
  • 200g or 1medium carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 500g or 1 celery root, peeled and cubed (I have used this instead of celery as I don’t want to thicken the soup with a roux, I’ll thicken it with vegetables instead).
  • 6 large garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tsp Herbes de Provence
  • 2 California or 4 Turkish bay leaves
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne
  • 1/8 teaspoon crumbled saffron threads
  • 500g or 1 large ziplock bag of shrimp tails, lobster shells and such
  • 1 cup of raw shrimp
  • 2 cans chopped stewed tomatoes (about 4 cups)
  • 2 cups dry white wine
  • 4 (3- by 1-inch) strips fresh orange zest
  • 4L water
  • salt and pepper to taste


  1. In a large soup kettle, put two tables spoons of EVOO and heat gently. Add leeks, fennel, carrot, celery root, garlic, herbes de Provence, bay leaves, cayenne, saffron and 1/2 teaspoon pepper cooking over medium heat, stirring occasionally about 10 minutes.
  2. Add the water and the bag of shrimp tails, lobsters shells and such. Bring to a boil and then turn down to a simmer, stirring occasionally for 2-3 hours (the broth should have a lovely seafood flavour and aroma).
  3. Force this mixture (yes, even the shrimp tails and lobster shells) through a food mill. You will not believe the flavour you will get from the seafood dregs!
  4. Add the canned tomatoes, wine and orange zest and bring back up to a boil for a minute or two. Remove from heat and allow to cool for a bout 15 minutes. Now press this through a fine sieve to make it a creamy silken soup (although the authentic soup does have some bits and chunks in it)
  5. Salt and pepper to taste.
  6. Set aside to cool and portion into plastic containers for freezing.

Ingredients for serving for two:

  • 2 portions of the previously made soup
  • 6 raw large shrimp
  • 300g of sturdy white fish, such as Haddock, or Hallibut
  • any other seafood you wish to add


  1. On the day that you wish to serve this soup, defrost the portions you need, and reheat to a slow boil. Add the fish and shrimp and cook through.
  2. Serve immediately with crostini and saffron aioli.

Provençal Fish Soup

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