Rice Chowder

As I've mentioned before, I'm cooking my way through several decades' worth of recipes I've torn out of magazines. I decided to try a recipe called "Wild Rice Chowder." Well.... I started out with the good intentions of actually following the recipe, but that was immediately foiled when the grocery store didn't have wild rice. They had rice blends that included wild rice, but no stand-alone wild rice.  At that point, all hopes of following the recipe were over. You can't make something called "Wild Rice Chowder" with no wild rice. 

So I made up my own recipe that was loosely inspired by the original. VERY loosely. Here's what I made. It was SO good. Definitely a new family favorite.

Rice Chowder

                                       1 T. oil                                                         1 c. water
                                       3 oz. ham, chopped                                 4 c. vegetable broth
                                       1 stalk celery, chopped                            2 T. flour
                                       3 carrots, chopped                                   2 c. milk
                                       1 garlic clove, minced                              1 c. swiss chard, chopped
                                       1/2 c. uncooked rice                                1 oz. Parmesan cheese

Heat oil in a large pot. Add ham, celery, and carrots. Saute over medium high heat about 8 minutes.  Add garlic and rice; saute 2 minutes. Pour in water, scraping up any brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Add broth and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low. Cover and cook 15 minutes. Combine flour and milk, whisking thoroughly.  Add to soup.  Cook uncovered for 10 minutes.  Add swiss chard and cook for 5 more minutes.  Ladle into bowls; top with grated Parmesan cheese.

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