March 2, 2009 — -- Recipe courtesy of Rachael Ray
Put a medium pot over medium-high heat, then add a drizzle of extra-virgin olive oil and the bacon and cook until the bacon is crisp, about 5 minutes. Remove the bacon with a slotted spoon and drain on a paper towel-lined plate.
Pour off a little of the bacon fat, leaving a thin, even layer. Add the potatoes, onion, celery, bell pepper and bay leaf to the pot, season with salt and pepper and cook for 7-8 minutes, stirring occasionally, until softened. Stir in the flour and cook for 2 minutes. Add the chicken broth and, using a wooden spoon, scrape up all the brown bits from the bottom of the pot. Add the milk, cover the pot and bring to a simmer.
Run your fingers through the crabmeat to check for shell bits, then combine it with the thyme and seafood seasoning. Uncover the pot, stir in the crabmeat and simmer for 6-7 minutes, until the potatoes are just fork-tender and the soup has thickened. Finish the chowder with the sherry and serve with the crispy bacon, chives, oyster crackers and hot sauce.
Recipe courtesy of Rachael Ray
Pre-heat the broiler. Broil the poblanos until blackened, 10 minutes. Transfer to a bowl, cover and let cool. Peel, seed and chop the poblanos.
Pre-heat the oven to 400°F. On a baking sheet, toss the tortilla strips with 1 tablespoon oil and the cumin. Bake until golden, about 10 minutes; season with salt.
Meanwhile, in a large, deep skillet, heat the remaining 2 tablespoons oil over medium-high heat. Add the corn and cook until charred at the edges, 10-12 minutes. Add the red onion and garlic, season with salt and pepper and cook until the onion is softened, about 5 minutes. Stir in the broth, tomatoes and poblanos.
Divide the tortilla strips among 4 soup bowls. Add the avocado and a squeeze of lime juice. Ladle the soup over the avocado. Top with cilantro; serve with the sour cream.