Sweet Potato Chowder — Vegan, Gluten & Dairy-Free

Sweet Potato Chowder (c) jfhaugenSweet Potatoes — the Vegetable Indispensable

Our month of soup continues with a very quick vegan, gluten and dairy-free chowder featuring sweet potatoes—both the white and the orange varieties.

If you enjoy the natural sweetness of sweet potatoes, you’ll enjoy Yam (c) jfhaugenthis rich-tasting and oh so comforting chowder that’s perfect for a satisfying and quick week-night meal as well as for weekend entertaining.

My niece prepared this soup and chose to add a finely minced jalapeno pepper, sautéing it along with the garlic and celery. A great idea when we crave bolder flavors and a little heat.

A few sweet-potato facts
Until a couple of days ago when I began writing this preface for Sweet Potato Chowder, I had no idea of just how popular (the 7th principal world food crop) and versatile sweet potatoes are:

  • George Washington Carver of peanut fame developed 118 different products from sweet potatoes, including using them as an alternative to corn syrup.
  • And this is amazing: there is such a product as sweet potato flour. The USDA used it during the First World War to “stretch the diminishing supplies of wheat flour in baked goods.” (Could this be a new gluten-free flour that would allow us to cut back on the sweetener as well?)

Perhaps the most important fact to know is that sweet potatoes, as they were labeled by a colonial physician, are a true “vegetable indispensable”—nutrient  rich, delicious and a favorite the world over.

Sweet Potato Chowder (c) jfhaugenSweet Potato Chowder w/ Almond Cream
So comforting, so delicious, so fast—so vegan, gluten and dairy-free!
For a bolder flavor, add a minced Serrano or jalapeño pepper to the soup along with the garlic.

Yield:  16 cups

2 tablespoons olive oil
2 cups yellow onion, ¼-inch dice
1½ cups chopped celery, 1/3-inch dice
2 large cloves garlic, crushed
1 tablespoon sea salt
Dozen twists fresh black pepper
2 bay leaves
2 teaspoons dried thyme leaves (1 tablespoon fresh)
7 cups (2 1/3 pounds) sweet potatoes, peeled, ½-inch dice
6 cups (2 pounds) yams, peeled, ½-inch dice
1½ cups organic corn, frozen and defrosted

Almond Cream
1 cup blanched, slivered almonds

Garnish
2 thinly sliced scallions

Heat the oil in a large soup pot over medium heat. Add the onion, Sweet Potato Chowder Just Before the Stock is Added (c) jfhaugencover the pot and cook about 5 minutes until it is translucent. Remove the lid and stir in the celery, garlic, salt, pepper, thyme and bay leaves and cook for about another 5 minutes till the onion begins to color.

Stir in the potatoes and 6 – 6½ cups of water to just cover the potatoes. Cover the pot and bring the soup to a boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer; partially cover the pot and cook for 15 minutes until the potatoes are tender.

Meanwhile prepare the Almond Cream by combining the slivered almonds with 2 cups of water in a blender for about 4 minutes on medium-high speed till very smooth.

Add the corn to the soup. Simmer the soup partially covered for another 5 minutes. Stir in the Almond Cream. Puree 4 cups of the soup (in two batches in the blender) and return it to the pot. Adjust the salt and pepper to taste.

Serve garnished with the thinly sliced scallions.

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3 thoughts on “Sweet Potato Chowder — Vegan, Gluten & Dairy-Free

  1. Looks delicious! Love the soup ‘bowl’ too.
    Thanks for another beautifully presented, educational recipe.
    Guess I’ll have to graduate from the wonderful roasted sweet potatoes – a perfect quick snack by the way.
    Thanks Janice.
    /sk

    • You are most welcome! There’s room for sweet potatoes any and every way you fix them–such a delicious vegetable.

  2. Pingback: Curried Red Lentil & Sweet Potato Soup | Everyday Healthy! Everyday Delicious!

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