Sunday, December 29, 2013

Ham Cheddar chowder

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! Hard to believe 2014 is upon us.

With leftover ham from Christmas I thought a nice cozy chowder was in order. The weather this evening is rainy and chilly with snow on the way.

I am definitely a "dump cook"...I dump things in, taste and add accordingly. To enjoy cooking I think if you want to enjoy cooking you have to be that way. Use measurements as a guide, then add or subtract to suit you and your families pallet. Use what you have and be creative. Taste it, and if you like it...go with it. If not, add something to change it until you do :-)

OK, enough chit chat...onto the recipe...

2 cups of water
2 cups of peeled and cubed potatoes (bite size)
1/2 cup of peeled and chopped carrots
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1/2 tsp each of salt and pepper
1/4 cup of butter
1/4 cup of flour
2 cups of milk
8-oz of shredded cheddar cheese
2 cups of corn, fresh or frozen
2 cups of cooked cubed ham

  1. In a large pot add water, potatoes, carrots, garlic salt and pepper. Bring to a boil and simmer until vegetables are tender, approx 10 minutes. Add the corn and ham and reduce the heat to low.
    Vegetables, Ham and Veggies
  2. In a different, medium sized pot melt butter then whisk in flour, over a medium-low heat. Cook a couple of minutes, then add the milk. Whisk periodically until white sauce (aka bechamel sauce) thickens.
    Bechamel sauce
  3. Stir in cheese until smooth.
  4. Pour cheesy bechamel into the large pot of ham and vegetables. Heat through and taste. Add seasoning if you desire.

Cook's notes
I used a hand grater for the garlic, faster and easier and less mess.
If you don't like carrots, leave them out. You could use peas or your favorite vegetable.
I used leftover corn I had in my frig.
Freeze leftovers and to pull out for a fast meal later. You will probably have to add some milk while reheating.

You could add some crusty bread or a salad for a full meal.