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Shrimp and Corn Chowder

Ingredients:

6 slices thick-cut bacon, cut into 1/2-inch pieces

2 tablespoon butter

6 green onions, chopped, divided

¼ cup finely diced celery

4 cloves garlic, minced

3 teaspoons old bay seasoning

4 tablespoons all-purpose flour

2 cups milk

3 to 5 cups chicken stock

2 cups frozen corn

2 cups frozen southern style frozen hash brown potatoes

1 (15-ounce) can cream-style corn

1/4 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper, plus additional to taste

1 pound Peeled & Deveined Shrimp

1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme

1 cup heavy cream

Hot sauce, optional for serving

Directions:

Cook bacon in large soup pan over medium heat until crisp, about 6 minutes. With a slotted spoon, remove the bacon from the pan and transfer to a paper-towel-lined plate. Lightly pat dry and set aside for serving. Discard all but 1 tablespoon bacon fat.

Add the butter to the pot and let melt. Set aside 1/4 cup of the sliced green onion tops for garnish for serving, then add the rest of the green onions. Add the celery. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the veggies are tender, about 3 minutes, then stir in the garlic, and Old Bay seasoning. Cook until the garlic is fragrant, about 30 seconds.

Sprinkle the flour over the top of the onion mixture, then cook, stirring constantly, for 1 minute. Add milk and 3 cups stock and bring to a boil, whisking constantly until it thickens. Turn down to a simmer. Add the corn kernels, potatoes, cream-style corn, and cayenne. Stir in the shrimp and continue cooking just until the shrimp are done, about 2 minutes. Remove from the heat, then stir in the thyme and heavy. If too thick ad a bit more stock. Serve hot, sprinkled with reserved bacon, green onion tops, and a dash or two of hot sauce as desired.

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