Yam, Corn & Chard Chowder

Growing up, both my parents were proficient in the kitchen. My dad is an amazing cook and my mom is a superb baker. They both shared the responsibility of putting dinner on the table, equally (or so I remember). I also recall, when us kids were young, there was one night a week that we had to pick out a recipe for dinner and Dad and Mom would help us make it. Essentially, they were teaching us how to cook, know our way around a kitchen, also how to be familiar with vegetables and the secrets of the mysterious pantry items. In addition, whoever cooked dinner that night didn't have to clean the kitchen. That laid in the hands of the family members who ate the dinner, but were not responsible for actually cooking it. We all helped and it made light work. Whoever cooked got to kick back their feet and relax!

Because cooking was such an integral part of growing up, it is absolutely bewildering to me that there are people about us who don't know how to cook. Don't like to cook? I can understand if it's not your bag. After cooking my feet hurt, and I just want to sit down but then there's a pile of dishes staring at me. I get it. It can be time consuming and laborious. But don't know how to cook? That's a different enchilada altogether. 

Todd and I decided to devote each Sunday dinner to a little cooking class. He's the executive chef and I'm the sous chef/cooking instructor during these lessons. I'm super excited at this prospect! And I hope he is too. Todd is an exceptional waffle maker (better than me!), but his capacity in the kitchen kind of ends there. Sorry, honey.

However, that's all changing. Yesterday was the first cooking instruction and he was lead behind this tasty Yam, Corn & Chard Chowder. This chowder is slightly sweetened by yams, laden with silky strands of chard, and popping with sweet corn and split peas. 

Produce On Parade - Yam, Corn & Chard Chowder

He did such an awesome job, I think I might just have to be the sous chef every night from now on! Does your spouse cook? How do you involve your children in the cooking process?

Yam, Corn & Chard Chowder

Serves 8

Notes: Sweet potatoes can replace the yams if you like. Spinach or kale can be substituted for the chard. Be sure to clean the leeks well, as dirt likes to hide out in the leaves. 

  • Peas:
  • 1/2 cup split peas, dry
  • 1 1/2 cup water
  • pinch of salt
  • Aromatics:
  • 1 Tbsp. coconut oil
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 3 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp. turmeric
  • Sustenance:
  • 2 medium yams or sweet potatoes, diced
  • 1 small strip of kombu (optional)
  • 3 cups vegetable broth
  • 3 cups water
  • 1 medium leek, cleaned and sliced (leaves removed)
  • Conclusion: 
  • 1 bunch of chard, de-stemmed and chopped
  • 11 oz. frozen corn
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. black pepper

In a small saucepan, bring the pea ingredients to a boil over high heat. Then, reduce to low and simmer for about 35 minutes or until the water is gone and the peas are tender. Set aside until ready to use.

Produce On Parade - Yam, Corn & Chard Chowder

In a large soup pot, heat the coconut oil over medium-low. Add the remaining aromatic ingredients and saute for about 5 minutes, until the onions are soft. Then, add the sweet potato and saute another few minutes. 

Produce On Parade - Yam, Corn & Chard Chowder

Add the vegetable broth and water. Turn to high and bring to a boil, then reduce to low and simmer for about 10 minutes, until the sweet potatoes are tender. Add the leeks and cook another couple minutes. 

Produce On Parade - Yam, Corn & Chard Chowder

At this point you can remove the piece of kombu, or blend it into the soup like I did.Transfer the soup carefully to a blender and blend roughly. It shouldn't be completely smooth.

Produce On Parade - Yam, Corn & Chard ChowderTransfer back to the soup pot and add the conclusion ingredients as well as the cooked peas. Heat over medium until the chard is wilted and the corn is heated, about 5 minutes. 

Produce On Parade - Yam, Corn & Chard Chowder

Serve hot. 

Produce On Parade - Yam, Corn & Chard Chowder Produce On Parade - Yam, Corn & Chard ChowderBob told me to tell you, "Happy Monday!"

Produce On Parade - Yam, Corn & Chard Chowder Produce On Parade - Yam, Corn & Chard ChowderHe also told me that you deserve tulips. Especially if you sign the Good Deed of The Day.

Listening to: Mree – Monsters

German Word of The Day: Yam (or sweet potato) --> Süßkartoffel (pronounced: zeus-cartoffel ) Literally translates to sweet (Süß) potato (Kartoffel).

Good Deed of The Day: Sign this petition to help rescue Masha from a "Bear Baiting" camp in Russia. This just made my heart so sad.

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Green Curry with Summer Squash and Fresh Peas

Guess what? I have some very exciting news! I'm going to be featured tomorrow, May 17th on NoshOnIt! So cool! Head on over to http://www.noshon.it and check out the site. They have daily recipes from featured chefs, like moi, and a theme for each day, such as Sweet Tooth Friday and World Cuisine Wednesday. If you like, you can even sign up for a daily recipe via email. Tomorrow I'll post the link for my feature as well. Now on to curry. Oh curry. How do I love thee? Let me count the ways. You're absurdly scrumptious, creamy, luscious,  healthy, quick and easy to prepare and ultimately so utterly divine. This is a most delicious curry, and I love that it only takes as long as the rice needs to cook.

For this curry I used a store bought green curry paste. You know the ones, those tiny little jars found in the "ethnic" section that are like $6. I can't believe it's called the ethnic section. Is that even proper? I don't know. Anyways, one fine and glorious day though, I will make my very own homemade curry paste and relish in it's infinite awesomeness. But until then...I will continue to buy my store bought paste. In the ethnic section. I think it should be called the worldly section. I like that better. I shall start the revolution.

Produce on Parade:Green Curry with Summer Squash and Fresh Peas

I used pink rice in this recipe but red rice, basmati or jasmine would also work beautifully. Also, I really enjoy the earthiness of bamboo shoots but if they aren't your thing or you've never had them, maybe start with only one 5 oz can.

Produce on Parade:Green Curry with Summer Squash and Fresh Peas

Green Curry with Summer Squash and Fresh Peas

Inspired by A House In The Hills

Serves 4

  • 1 1/2 cup pink rice (or any you desire)
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp. Thai green curry paste
  • 1 garlic clove, minced fine
  • 1/4 tsp. red pepper flakes (optional)
  • 2 small onions or 1 large onion, chopped
  • 2 large pinches of salt
  • 2 zucchini or about 2 cups, chopped
  • 3 yellow summer squash or about 2 cups, chopped
  • 2 cans (10 oz total) of bamboo shoots, drained
  • juice from 1/2 lime
  • 1/2 Tbsp. brown sugar
  • 1 can full-fat coconut milk
  • 1/2 heaping cup of fresh or frozen peas, shelled
  • 1/4 cup chopped basil

Begin by cooking the rice according to the package. I soaked mine first for about 24 hours but that's optional. I used 3 3/4 cups of water in my rice cooker. Tip: spray the rice cooker bowl with a non-stick cooking spray to keep the rice from sticking. It makes cleanup so much easier, which obviously I love!

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In a large wok or frying pan add the coconut oil and heat for a minute over low heat. When the oil is hot, add the curry paste, garlic, red pepper flakes and stir for one minute or so, then add the onions. Saute until they are almost translucent and soft, about 5 minutes. Add two large pinches of salt and stir.

Now add the squash, zucchini, bamboo shoots, coconut milk, lime juice and brown sugar. Cook over medium-low heat for about 10-15 minutes or until the vegetables begin to soften, then add the peas and cook another 5 minutes. Stir occasionally.


When the vegetables become tender, serve the curry over rice, and sprinkle with 1 Tbsp of chopped basil.

Produce on Parade:Green Curry with Summer Squash and Fresh Peas

Curry has to be one of my most favored dishes, especially if it's full of wonderful vegetables. If you have a fantabulous recipe for red or green curry paste , feel free to share! P.S. I love the steam captured in the photo above. Yummy curry.

source of rice image