Dock Festivals, Sun Burns and Corn Chowder

Yesterday I volunteered at the last Dock Festival for FeastBC’s month long festival. It was so sunny I wondered if I had woken up back in Maple Ridge. But then I remembered that if I was in Maple Ridge, Daisy would be taking up 90% of my bed, and I wouldn’t be waking up at 7am to Colin tapping on his iPhone. Oh the joys.

The dock fest was amazing fun as usual. This week’s theme was spot prawns, which are one of the few gifts from the sea I can eat without unintentionally gagging. Scallops, you’re next. Oysters, I’m sorry, but I don’t think we’re ever going to make it work.

I tried to eat everything, but again keeping kids from plummeting into the ocean is a full time job. That, and making sure the Europeans stay inside the liquor tent. They just don’t understand that they can’t wander around with their booze in Canada. Lucky Europeans and their lax drinking laws. Jealous to the max over here, sitting inside with my bourbon.

My favorite spot prawn bite of deliciousness was a yummy cracker topped with a prawn, strawberry and cucumber mixture from the Wickaninnish Inn chefs. It was girly. I like girly food.

For the second half of the festival I was stationed at the top of the hill that leads down to the dock. I had to stand there and keep cars from mowing people down.  I got to wear an orange vest. I felt powerful.

All of these fun volunteer duties were done while the sun, so rarely seen in Tofino, bore down on me. I had put on sunscreen in the morning, but it just did not hold up throughout the day. Luckily, most of my body was covered by leggings and a three quarter length shirt, but everything else was exposed. I am a patchy lobster.

I have a raging case of flip flop lines, a Rudolph nose, beet red forehead and a pretty nasty forearm burn. When I had a shower this morning, I also realized that I had forgotten to put sunscreen on my scalp. Ouch.

Unfortunately, I didn’t get any pictures of this week’s dock fest. I put my card in my camera before I left the house, turned it on to make sure my camera was happy and healthy, which it seemed to be. I guess going to the docks upset my camera, as it promptly crapped out on me when I arrived. Funnily enough, when I left the docks to go to work, it immediately started working again.

Then it requested new batteries. Selfish camera. Thinks of no one but itself.

Alliteration Alert! Today I’m making a giant pot of chorizo corn chowder with corn we bought in Coombs. It will be grammatically correct and delicious. Here’s the recipe:

Corn Chowder (adapted from The Pioneer Woman‘s corn chowder)

Ingredients

  • 2 slices Bacon, Cut Into 1/2-inch Pieces (or Smaller)
  • 2 links of chorizo, cut into chunks
  • 2 Tablespoons Butter
  • 1-½ whole Yellow Onion, Diced
  • 5 ears Corn, Shucked (about 4 Cups) or frozen corn
  • 2 medium sized potatoes, cut into chunks (no need to peel unless you are compelled to)
  • 2 whole Chipotle Peppers In Adobo Sauce, Finely Diced (chiptole powder would be fine too, use 1 tsp)
  • 1 whole 4-ounce Can Diced Green Chilies (you find these with the Mexican foods. Tiny can)
  • 4 cups chicken broth
  • 1-½ cup Heavy Whipping Cream
  • ½ teaspoons Kosher Salt (more To Taste)
  • 3-4 slices of crusty bread, cut into cubes
  • 1 tbsp olive oil

Preparation Instructions

Slice corn kernels off the cob. I do this by standing up an ear of corn in a wide bowl and holding the top firmly while slicing the kernels off the cob, running my knife down the ear.

Cook bacon in a pot over medium heat for about 2 minutes. Throw in the chorizo and cook until both the bacon and chorizo are crisp. Throw in diced onion and cook for about 3-4 minutes, stirring to coat the onion with all the yummy bacon/sausage fat. Add butter and melt. Add corn and potatoes. Stir to mix the veggies and coat with all the deliciousness. Add both kinds of chilies and stir.

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees

Pour in the chicken broth and cream. Turn the heat to high and bring to a boil. Let it boil for just a minute, then turn it down to a simmer. Stir frequently, because you don’t want the cream to do weird things.

While the chowder is simmering, place the bread cubes on a baking sheet and toss with 1 tbsp of olive oil. Place in the preheated oven for 15 minutes, or until the bread is crisp all the way through and is a toasty brown color.

Ladle the soup into bowls and top with the croutons. I like it with some sour cream, because the chipotle can be a little spicy.

Die of happiness, because this chowder is so freaking good. It makes enough for about 8 servings and just gets better if you eat the leftovers the next day. Yum.

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