CRAWFISH SWEET POTATO CHOWDER WITH ROASTED CHILES
From the kitchen of Penelope Malcolm of Americus, GA - 1st Place Winner, Soups Category in the Sweet Rewards Recipe Contest sponsored by the Louisiana Sweet Potato Commission & Louisian Cookin Magazine.
Makes 8 Servings
• 1 large red bell pepper
• 4 large poblano peppers
• 1 large jalapeño pepper
• 6 slices thick-cut bacon, diced
• 2 cups onion, chopped
• 1 cup celery, chopped
• 1 tablespoon garlic, minced
• 4 tablespoons all-purpose flour
• 5 cups chicken stock
• 2 cups half and half
• 1 cup whole milk
• 1 can Louisiana mashed sweet potatoes, 15.5 ounces
• 2 teaspoons salt
• 1 teaspoon black pepper
• 1 teaspoon dried thyme
• 1 bay leaf
• 1 teaspoon paprika
• 1 tablespoon Creole mustard
• 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
• 1 15 ounce can Louisiana cut sweet potatoes, cut into 1-inch dice
• 1 1/2 pounds crawfish tails
• Parmesan croutons
• Bacon pieces from above recipe
• Chopped scallions
Place bell, poblano, and jalapeño peppers on a foil-lined baking sheet and place under oven broiler on top rack. Turn peppers so that all sides blister and blacken. Remove peppers from the oven, place in a large bowl and cover tightly with plastic wrap so that the peppers steam. When peppers have cooled enough to handle, remove the blackened skins, stems, seeds and ribs and chop coarsely. Set aside.
In a 6-quart, heavy-bottomed Dutch oven, cook bacon over low heat until crisp. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towels. (Bacon will be part of the garnish.)
In remaining bacon fat, add onion, celery and garlic and cook until softened, 3 to 4 minutes. Whisk in flour and cook for 1 minute. Gradually whisk in chicken stock until flour mixture is smoothly incorporated into the stock. Add half and half, milk, mashed sweet potatoes and roasted peppers. Add salt, pepper, thyme, bay leaf, paprika, mustard, and Worchestershire sauce. Bring to a simmer and cook, stirring often, for 10 to 15 minutes.
Add diced sweet potatoes and crawfish and allow to heat through, 1 to 2 minutes. Just before serving, garnish with Parmesan croutons, bacon and scallions.
The Louisiana Sweet Potato Commission’s mission is to promote the consumption of sweet potatoes, mostly the Louisiana Sweet Potato, by educating consumers on the potatoes’many nutritional values. The Louisiana Sweet Potato Commission’s website is www.SweetPotato.org. The contest was not only sponsored by Louisiana Cookin’ but by our wonderful partners: Bruce’s Yams, the New Orleans Menu, Delgado Community College of Culinary Arts, Louisiana Sweet Potato Commission, and Allen Canning Company.