Cheesy Italian Sausage Chowder Recipe

Cheesy Italian Sausage Chowder
Submitted By: Taz

Ingredients:

2 lbs Mild/Sweet Italian Sausage Meat - can substitute Hot Italian Sausage Meat if desired
¼ lb Extra Sharp Cheddar Cheese - grated
¼ lb Monterey Jack Cheese - grated
6 medium Yukon Gold Potatoes - peeled and cut into ¼ - ½ inch 'cubes'
2 cloves Fresh Garlic - minced
2 medium Celery Stalks - diced
1 medium Onion - diced
6 Cups Chicken Stock
2 Cups Heavy Cream - can substitute Half and Half if desired
1 Tbs Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Kosher Salt and Fresh Ground Black Pepper to taste
-OPTIONAL GARNISH-
Fresh Grated Parmigiano-Reggiano Cheese
Chopped Green Onion
Additional Grated Cheddar Cheese

Preparation:
  1. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat until shimmering - Add onion and sauté until soft and slightly browned (apx 10-12 minutes) - Add garlic and continue to sauté for 2 minutes - Add sausage meat to the skillet and break apart - Allow to cook until sausage is cooked through and browned - Remove from heat and drain off any extra fat - Set aside until needed
  2. Place a large soup pot over medium heat - Add potatoes, celery, and chicken stock - Bring to a boil
  3. One boil has been achieved, reduce heat to a simmer and allow to cook until potatoes are cooked through and tender (apx 20 minutes)
  4. Add the cooked and drained sausage/onion mixture to the pot and thoroughly combine
  5. Add heavy cream and return to a simmer
  6. Whisk a handful of the grated cheese into the soup at a time until completely melted and smooth - Repeat until all of the cheese has been incorporated
  7. Allow soup to simmer uncovered for 5-10 minutes until thick and creamy
  8. Give it a taste and add black pepper to taste (apx ½ tsp) and kosher salt to taste if needed
  9. Serve hot garnished as desired along with a good 'hunk' of crusty bread
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