I really like to make corn chowder, since it can be adapted to a lighter, vegetarian meal for us in the summertime. I ran across a recipe in Russ Cohen's book "Wild Plants I have Known . . .And Eaten" for a similar chowder using the male parts of the flower spike on cattails. It sounded interesting, so I made it, using my method and vegetarian ingredients. This soup is so tasty, Gillian will eat a bowl and a half without hesitation. Robert loves it, and so do I. I don't use heavy cream, and substitute vegetable broth for the chicken broth.
Cattail Chowder makes about 5-6 servings
4 Tbsp butter
1 medium onion, diced
4 Tbsp flour
2 C. vegetable broth
2 C. low-fat milk
2 C. potatoes, diced
1 celery rib, diced
1/2 C. sweet red pepper, diced
2 C. cattail spike pulp, stripped from the spike
5 bay laurel leaves
salt and pepper
1. Sautée the onion in the butter until it is soft and translucent.
2. Add the flour and stir, cooking about 1 minute.
3. Pour in the vegetable broth and milk, and slowly bring the mixture up to a boil, stirring often.
4. Add the remaining ingredients, and reduce the chowder to a simmer. Cook 10-15 minutes, stirring often, until the potatoes are tender. Remove the bay laurel leaves to serve.