Sunday, September 25, 2011

Aunty Audrey's Bacon & Ham Chowder

Last night when I got home from work my youngest daughter asked me to make “That potato soup with the ham and bacon”. I was sure that I had already blogged on it and attempted to pull it up on my blog when I discovered that I had not.

So, here’s the story about this soup…

My mom’s sister Audrey wasn’t known for her culinary talents but there was one soup that she made that was truly memorable.

Imagine… bacon, ham, onions and corn coming together to make up a hearty, yet, light soup.   I know that it doesn't seem possible to create a light and hearty soup, but it is.  My aunt kept her soup brothy rather than thick, yet it was packed with all the flavors that remind me of chowder.

The bacon and the ham filled this soup with a smoky background while the corn and onions casually float around nonchalantly filling space, allowing the chunks of potatoes to keep my palate aware that this was a meal not just a soup.

You could choose to make this a thicker soup by adding more flour to the roux.  For me it was meant to be on the brothy side and I will make it that way because that's how my aunt made it.  This has been comforting to me and now it will be to my children.

It takes two pans to make this soup right, a soup pot and a saute pan. One to actually cook the soup and one to brown up the hearty ingredients (rendering the fat) that make this simple soup memorable.

*** If you double this soup recipe, you don't need to double the onion unless you want too :)

Aunty Audrey’s Bacon and Ham Corn Chowder

1 pound bacon, sliced small
1 large onion, chopped small
½ tsp. black pepper (1 tsp. if you prefer a more peppery flavor)
1/3 cup flour
¼ pound ham, cubed
4 med. red skin potatoes, diced
4 cups water
2 ½ tsp. kosher salt
14 oz. can creamed corn
14 oz. can whole corn, drained
14 oz. can chicken broth (I prefer Swanson's)
1 ½ cups evaporated milk, whole milk, half and half or cream (I prefer to use evaporated milk)

Cut bacon strips in to thin slices and fry in a sauté pan until browned. Drain bacon and oil on to a plate lined with a couple of paper towels. In the same pan add onions and drained bacon. Cook until onions are soft. Add black pepper and flour and cook for about 2 minutes to bring out the flavor of the pepper and to cook out the raw flavor of the flour. Add ham and give it a little stir.  Set aside.

Place potatoes in a pot and cover with water. Add salt and bring to a boil. Cook for 5 minutes in boiling water. Add bacon mixture and bring back to a boil. Add both cans of corn, chicken broth and bring back to a boil. Add milk and let heat to just a boil. Remove from heat and let sit for about 10 minutes before serving.


  1. Replies
    1. Hi Kalola, It's the perfect time of year to make this deliciously comforting soup.Thanks for stopping by :)