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Southwestern Chicken & Corn Chowder

By 10:17 AM , , ,

One of the things I love about a simple soup recipe is the flexibility it gives you to really make the recipe your own.  I came across a Chicken Corn Chowder recipe in Cooking Light and instantly I knew that it could be the bones to a dish that the Husband and I would love!

The Husband I recently returned from Florida and have been fighting allergies, etc. since we got back.  Both of us were really under the weather yesterday, so a soup was right up our alley.

I decided to go the Southwestern direction with this chowder - adding jalapenos and a variety of bell peppers.  Additionally, I swapped out green onions for regular onions and added cumin and cayenne.
Another way to add flavor to the chowder is to add spices to the chicken prior to cooking. My favorite method for cooking chicken that needs to be added to a recipe is to drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle both sides with salt, pepper and any additional seasonings. I then bake at 375 degrees until the chicken is just cooked through. In this case, I seasoned the chicken breasts with salt, pepper and Emeril's "Southwest Essence".

Both of us really loved this chowder. The sweet corn was a great balance to the spice of the jalapenos and cayenne. The low-fat milk gave the soup creaminess without being heavy. This was also very easy to make.

Southwestern Chicken & Corn Chowder

1 tablespoon butter
6 green onions
1 jalapeno, sliced thinly
1 1/2 cups chopped bell pepper (green/orange/red/yellow)
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 cups shredded cooked chicken breast
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 - 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 - 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 (16-ounce) pkg frozen sweet corn kernels, thawed and divided
1 (14-ounce) can fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
2 cups fat-free or low-fat milk

Melt butter in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add onions, peppers and jalapeno to pan; saut√© 2 minutes. Add flour; cook 1 minute, stirring constantly with a whisk. Stir in chicken, salt, pepper, cumin, cayenne and 1/2 package of corn, and broth; bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer 5 minutes.

While mixture simmers, combine the remaining corn and milk in a blender; process until smooth. Add milk mixture to pan; simmer 10-15 minutes.

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