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Summer Chowder with Corn, Shrimp & Lager

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Hot soup in summer borders on felony, unless that soup is chowder. We ix-nayed the potatoes and filled ours with lighter but flavor-packed morsels: sweet corn shaved off the cob (though frozen will do), tiny briny shrimp, season-resistant bacon and a full cup of a bright, golden lager. Bakery biscuits or savory cheese scones would be delicious on the side; masochists can, of course, turn on the oven and make them from scratch. Either way, they’ll help make this chowder a splendid summer meal. Just don’t call it soup.

Makes: 4

Ingredients:
  • 4 slices bacon, halved crosswise
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 8 scallions, whites and light greens only, thinly sliced
  • 1 celery stalk, finely chopped
  • 2 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 14 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 3 cups whole milk
  • 112 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 cup standard lager or cream ale
  • 2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme
  • 1 bay leaf
  • kosher salt and black pepper
  • 3 cups fresh or frozen corn
  • kernels (thawed if frozen)
  • 1 pound medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh chives, plus more to garnish

Instructions:

1. In a large saucepan over medium heat, cook the bacon until just crisp. Transfer to a paper-towel-lined plate, reserving the fat in the skillet. Crumble the bacon when cool.
2. Add the butter, scallions and celery to pan; sauté until soft, about 4 minutes. Add the garlic and cayenne; sauté 30 seconds. Add the flour; stir
1 minute more. Stir in the milk, broth, beer, thyme, bay leaf, ¾ teaspoon kosher salt and a good grind of
pepper; bring just to a boil.
3. Reduce heat to medium-low, and stir in corn; simmer 5 minutes. Add the shrimp, 1 tablespoon chives and half the bacon. Simmer until shrimp is just cooked through, about 3 minutes. Ladle into serving bowls; garnish with the reserved bacon
and chives.


 

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