Amaranth, Quinoa, and Corn Chowder

Recipe by Lemon Drop
READY IN: 45mins
YIELD: 12 cups




  • In a large, heavy pot, melt 2 tablespoons of the butter over medium-high heat. Stir in the leeks, celery, red bell pepper, and 1/4 teaspoon salt. Cook, stirring frequently, until the vegetable are soft, about 5 minutes.
  • Stir in the amaranth and 3 cups of water. Bring to a boil over high heat. Stir in the quinoa and thyme. Return to a boil. Reduce the heat slightly and cook at a gentle boil, partially covered, for 10 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, in a blender or food processor, puree 3 cups of the corn kernels with 1 cup of water. When the quinoa has cooked for 10 minutes, stir the corn puree and the remaining corn kernels into the soup. Add salt to taste. Reduce the heat and simmer until the quinoa and amaranth are tender, 3 to 5 more minutes. When the quinoa is done, there will be no starchy white dot in the center of each grain, and some of the germs' "tails" may unfurl and float freely. On close inspection, the amaranth will look like tiney opaque bubble floating on the surface.
  • Stir in the milk and remaining tablespoon of butter. Add more salt, if needed. Divide into portions and garnish each with a little parsley.
  • Note: The soup thickens on standing; thin as needed with additional milk, and add salt to taste.
  • Variations:.
  • For dots of color, use 2 tablespoons of red quinoa and a scant 1/2 cup ivory quinoa. Add the red quinoa when you add the amaranth.
  • Use half-and-half or heavy cream instead of milk.
  • Use dried tarragon instead of thyme.
  • Shrimp, Corn, and Quinoa Soup.
  • Instead of water, use 4 cups of fish or clam broth. Use oregano instead of thyme. Once the quinoa is tender, add 1/2 pound peeled small shrimp. Cook until the shrimp turn pink, about 1 minute. Omit the milk.