Life on the Cape March '18 & Shrimp, Bacon & Corn Chowder

      I know this might sound like a broken record but what is up with the weather. As I sit and finish another weeks bog up all I hear is the sound of mix precipitation on the skylights and out the slider on the tarp that covers the firewood on the deck. And to thing there is possibly another right behind this for this next weekend Palm Sunday. So what good has happened this week, First the front store door is on. After a not so small sizing problem I will say the folks at Larson Doors went out of there way to get our not so little problem resolved. I am most appreciative of all they did, and seriously we love the look of it, could not be more pleased. Something else that has gone fairly well is that I saw my surgeon since we last spoke and they put me back on something to help my nervous system. Back surgery really messes with the nerves and just since end of last week seeing a major change and difference, almost makes one think I may actually feel a bit more normal and beach life may just return. yah. Ok so some of you are asking why talk about these seemingly trivial things, well some out there think that living on the Cape is always filled with beach life year round and everyone is retired or are millionaires that don't have to do much. Well there are many of us, actually the year rounders that are working stiffs, we still have to get up every morning and do a job to pay the mortgage, put food on the table, get kids to school and do the daily chores everyone else does. And actually being a visitor, vacationer or part timer gets to see more of the Cape and the things to do here than most of us who live year round. The driveways still need shoveled and we still deal with power outages and some with coastal flooding. The Cape is a wonderful place to be, but sometimes outsiders just wanting to get here to live forget, it's not always a day on the beach, and the bills and laundry still need done. But I have to say, after work I am seven minutes from either side of the Cape, and even in the colder weather beach combing is a fun thing to do or go see if you can spot any snowy owls. Life may not be as glamorous as a lot would like to think, but even with bills to pay, housing upkeep is a little more intense and costly, I would not give up, getting up, looking out my window and know that I am on a very special place. But I have to say, and sooooo ready for Spring and Summer, it has been one long wicked wass winter. Have a great day in all you do, especially if you can do it right here on old Cape Cod.

      This week with the weather we have not been out much so business shopping has not been on the top priority. But one place that I can note is the Candy Company located at 975 MA-28, South Yarmouth and open from 9:30-8:30 every day weather permitting. You can also find them on Facebook. You might think, nah thats just a kids place, well you would be totally wrong. They have one of the largest collection of Jelly Bellies I have seen, they have home made chocolates, they have candy bars that are from by-gone years (don't worry they are fresh as they are made in smaller batches for specialty shops like this one). They have soft candies and hard candies, American candies to German candies. So although the kids and grand kids will love and their dentists will love this place but so will you adults of any age will find this a fun place to go. Best part you don't have to buy in large quantities, but buy more smaller amounts and more varieties. Go check them out, it's a wonderful place to explore. 
      Well, first of all folks, if any of you think that it's my fault for bring this weather back from Florida I am soo sorry, but really it was not me. Trust me if I had my druthers I would be asking for more seasonal temperatures and a whole lot less precipitation at least less of the frozen stuff. But it is what it is and being a hearty New Englander we've seen it all before and we know in the end that it will all even out and Spring will eventually sprung. What just bits is that we can't get a lot of the out door clean up that really needs done. I have done a little as a couple days ago the sun was shining so I was able to get the grounds at least cleaned up from all the broken sticks and tree branches that had blown down. But other than that. However we have been working hard on freshening up the inside, putting on a new coat of paint in some of the rooms and doing some hardy cleaning. The tower and lamp room will be last as we really need warmer weather to work in there as there is no heat in the actual tower or lamp room. But I have been up there quite a bit checking out the landscape and seeing what we have to work with come late April and May, and then when season comes. Where are we going to put all the people, where are they going to park, where are the boats going to run into trouble, from where are we going to launch the dinghies and launch boats. And it looks like we may need to build us a new pier to tie up the skiff. So much to do and so little time, but as usual I know when the weather does break I will put out the word and we will have a team show up to help. We have such great volunteers around the Cape. So I hope you are weathering the weather well and that you are staying warm and dry. Please be sure to put us on the planner for when you come to the Cape to come visit us, we will be looking to see you all. Until than that have a great and wonderful, and especially if you can do it right here on old Cape Cod. Looking to see you real soon.     
      As I started to research this recipe I found about 3 or 4 primary recipes that were offered and tagged from 3 to 4 food recipe sites. Some have near same wording and a couple same brand ingredients. I am just going to post it, let you know I took it from and unnamed source and have taken any reference of brand names out of it so not to infringe on a brand name. But I just want to declare this is not my recipe and I lay no claim in coming up with it. Now with all that said anything I have added I will note as my add, but seriously like all recipes, look it over add what you want take away what you want and make it your own. Maybe you switch out Crab for the Shrimp, maybe you just add Crab. Then again what about Lobster or Calamari, the recipes I give you are to try as is then play with them to make them better or different for you and your family. So give it a try and enjoy, especially since it seems old man winter is not going to give up without a fight. Now on with the show,
 
      This week's recipe: Shrimp, Bacon & Corn Chowder
 
      5      slices     Hickory smoked bacon, cut into small pieces
      1      pd          medium shrimp, peeled and divined (41-50)
      2      cups      sweet onion, chopped
      1      Tbsp      fresh minced garlic
      1      tsp         paprika
     ½      tsp         dried thyme
      1      tsp         Old Bay Seasoning (my adding)
              Pinch crushed red pepper (I omitted this)
2-1/2      cups      frozen corn kernels
      3      cups      chicken stock
      1      cup        half and half (to reduce calories use 2% milk)
              (You will want to thicken with corn starch and cold water if using milk)
              Salt and pepper, to taste
              Fresh thyme sprigs for garnish, if desired
 
      In a large pot or Dutch oven on medium heat, fry bacon pieces until crispy. Transfer to a plate lined with paper towels or news paper. Drain off fat from pot, leaving 1 tablespoon, Add shrimp to pot and cook until pink (about 3-4 minutes), stirring frequently. Remove shrimp with slotted spoon and add to the plate with bacon. Leave juices in pot. Add onions and garlic. Sauté for about 3 minutes, or until onions are soft and translucent. Add paprika, crushed red pepper (and/or Old Bay Seasoning), thyme, salt and pepper. Cook, stirring frequently for 2 minutes. Add corn, chicken stock and half and half (or milk). Stir to combine. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 15 minutes. Using an immersion blender, blend about half of the soup until creamy. (If you don’t have an immersion blender, blend 2 cups of soup in a blender and pulse until creamy) (beware: blend small amounts at a time and hold down the top of blender pitcher while blending because there is a risk of the top blowing off and hot liquids to blow out!) and return to pot and stir well, (if you used milk instead of half and half if not thick enough at this point thicken with corn starch and cold water, do a little at a time till you reach desired thickness). Service with chopped bacon pieces. 
 
Please join me at ccrockhopper.com for some morning grunts and groans a few funnies, and maybe a word or two of encouragement. Hope to see you there. 
 
 
 

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