America may be blotted with asphalt-moated fast food stops but for more than two decades, a slow food movement has been, aptly, slowly emerging. In chapters across the world, including one right here in St. Louis at www.slowfoodstl.org, people are fixed on the preservation of local foods and culinary traditions. Despite its name, the slow food movement’s foundation is taste not haste.
Still, dishes that can be prepared quickly take on entirely new dimensions when allowed to cook slowly, very slowly.
These recipes are two of my slow favorites, the potatoes new, the chowder old. The chowder recipe easily converts to a delicious clam chowder. When taste counts, choose clam chowder. When taste and local both count, smoked turkey is the pick.
SMOKED TURKEY CHOWDER
Time to table: 3 – 4 hours
Makes 10 cups
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 3 large onions, chopped
- 1 pound fresh mushrooms, caps broken into pieces, stems chopped (see TIPS)
- 1 teaspoon sugar (optional but encourages browning)
- 1 – 2 large Yukon gold potatoes, skins on
- 4 cups turkey or chicken stock (see TIPS)
- 4 cups whole milk
- 1 smoked turkey leg, skin discarded, meat cut into slices
- 1 tablespoon dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon fresh rosemary, chopped
In a large pot or Dutch oven, melt butter on medium. Add onion, toss to coat. Stirring occasionally, cook until onions are deep gold in color, about 90 minutes. Remove from pot, add mushrooms and sugar. Stirring occasionally, let cook til deep brown in color, about 30 minutes.
Meanwhile, separately cook potatoes in salted water. Drain, peel if desired, cut into large chunks.
Meanwhile, separately warm all remaining ingredients on low heat, not allowing to boil.
In the large pot, combine cooked mushrooms, cooked onions, cooked potatoes and warm milk mixture. Cover and gently cook on medium low heat for 1 – 2 hours, stirring occasionally, not allowing to boil.
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