Our Harvest Kitchen Food Service Manager, Chef Sean Kontos, loves sharing some of his recipes for the home cook.
“Chicken chowder is a very Western New York food. My mom’s from a very small town out there, and I have memories of eating something similar to this at cookouts in the summer. Around here, we use clams. In the UK, they use fish. In Buffalo, they use chicken. This is a slightly spicy and hearty — yet still reasonably light — soup that makes a great accompaniment to any BBQ as well as a great meal by itself!”
Try This from Chef Sean!
Yields 2 Quarts
1/4 Stick of butter
1/4 c. Olive oil
1/2 Large onion — medium dice
3 Ribs of celery — medium dice
1 Large red bell pepper — medium dice
1 Large jalapeño pepper — medium dice
2 Cloves garlic — minced
1 Tbsp. Salt (or to taste)
1/2 tsp. Black pepper — ground
1/4 c. All-purpose flour (or rice flour)
1 Qt. Chicken stock
1 Large red potato — skin on, medium dice
6-8 oz. Chicken breast — cubed
1 c. Heavy cream (brought to room temperature)
1/4 tsp. Crushed red pepper flakes
1/2 tsp. Dried thyme
1 Tbsp. Paprika
1/4 tsp. Celery seed
1 Good pinch of dried/ground cayenne pepper
- Melt the butter in a sauce pot. When the butter has melted, add the olive oil to fortify.
- Sweat the onion, celery, and garlic until fragrant and slightly translucent. Add the peppers, salt, and black pepper. Cook for another 5 minutes.
- Add the flour to the pot and stir very well to break up the flour and keep it from burning. Once the “flour smell” (smell of raw flour) goes away and it starts to smell a bit nuttier, slowly add the chicken stock to the pot. Stirring while adding the stock slowly prevents the flour from clumping.
- Add the chicken(*), potatoes, and spices to the pot. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. Stir the soup frequently so the solids and flour don’t burn to the pan. Simmer for about 20 minutes or until the potatoes are tender and the chicken starts to shred a little.
- Add the cream to the soup and simmer for another 5 minutes. Check for seasoning.
* You could also substitute cooked chicken in this recipe. Just add it near the end so it doesn’t get tough.
About Chef Sean Kontos
Sean is a native of Dover, NH, who has been working in the food service industry for 13 years. After graduating from Johnson & Wales University with a degree in culinary arts in 2011, he went on to cook around Nantucket and the seacoast of New Hampshire, focusing on local and sustainable cooking particularly tied to whole animal butchery. After backpacking through Europe, he and his now wife moved to Providence where he worked at Local 121, eventually becoming head chef. Most recently, he helped open Farm & Coast Market in South Dartmouth, MA, as a butcher and chef. Sean started out as a volunteer with our RI Farm to School program until moving on to work with Harvest Kitchen. Today he is an important part of our team, playing a major role in our local foods café, crafting our seasonal menu, and bringing skill and expertise to our operations.