This title is a bit misleading -- when most people think of chowder, they think of creamy, fat-laden and sometimes goopy stuff, not suitable for everyday eating but maybe, just maybe, an occasional indulgence.
But not this one. With less than 300 calories per serving, and zero cream, this is an everyday staple, perfect for the last day of a camping trip when you have various small bits of this and that leftover. While the recipe calls for specific vegetables, feel free to substitute whatever you have on hand. I hate carrots and green beans, so they're absent from this soup -- but if you've got 'em, use 'em.
This soup can also be easily altered for vegetarian diners by replacing the turkey with tofu and the turkey stock with vegetable stock. Almond milk or soy milk may be used instead of the regular milk, and the butter may be tossed in favor of vegetable oil. The parmesan may also be omitted -- just add a bit more flour to compensate, or your dumplings will be especially sticky.
If you don't hike or camp with fresh herbs, substitute 1 T dried herbs for the 1/4 cup fresh ones in the dumplings.
2 T olive oil
1 small onion, diced
2 small chili peppers, diced
1/2 cup chopped fennel (or substitute two ribs chopped celery)
1 small bell pepper, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup white wine or madeira (or even beer; whatever you have on your trip that will deglaze the pot, because I, for one, certainly don't like cleaning a pot that hasn't been deglazed)
1/4 cup flour
1 cup milk
5 cups turkey stock or chicken stock
2 cups corn
2 cups shredded turkey or chicken
1 cup flour
2 t baking powder
1/2 t salt
2 T butter, cold, cut into small pieces
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
1/4 cup fresh herbs, chopped (I like sage, bronze fennel and baby rosemary, but only because that's what is taking over the garden and greenhouse right now...use whatever you have, even parsley!)
salt and pepper
freshly cracked black pepper, optional
- Heat olive oil until simmering. Add onion and cook, stirring, about five minutes. Do not let the onion brown.
- Add chili peppers and fennel, and cook another five minutes.
- Add bell pepper and garlic. Cook, stirring, another three minutes.
- Add wine to the pot and scrap the bottom until it's clean.
- Whisk the flour into the milk in a separate bowl until frothy. Add to the pot. Pour a little of the stock into the bowl, whirl it around, and pour into the stock pot (just to make sure you get all the flour into the soup and out of your bowl).
- Add remaining stock to the pot. Add corn and turkey, cover, and simmer while you make the dumplings.
- For the dumplings: Mix flour, baking powder, and salt in the same bowl you used for the milk/flour mixture for the soup (no sense dirtying yet another camp dish!). Add butter and milk, and incorporate. Add parmesan and herbs, and mix until fully combined.
- Season soup with salt and pepper (do this before you add the dumplings!).
- Divide dough into 8 pieces and drop carefully onto the simmering soup. They will sink at first, but then float as they cook...so be sure to spread them out when you drop them into the soup.
- Cover pot and simmer another 10 minutes or until dumplings are cooked through. Serve with freshly cracked black pepper, if desired.