Inspired by local bounty, this chowder is rich with chicken and earthy carrots, rutabagas, and turnips, all bathed in a creamy stock and sprinkled with dill.
- 1 whole chicken (3 1/2 to 4 pounds)
- 8 to 10 cups water
- 1 large onion, 1/2 left whole, 1/2 chopped
- 2 carrots, 1 halved lengthwise, 1 cut into 1/2-inch dice
- 4 stems fresh flat-leaf parsley, plus more for garnish
- 10 whole black peppercorns
- 1 ounce (2 tablespoons) unsalted butter
- 2 tablespoons flour, preferably Wondra
- 1 small turnip, cut into 1/2-inch dice
- 4 ounces rutabaga or parsnip, cut into 1/2-inch dice
- Coarse salt
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 1 tablespoon fresh dill, finely chopped, for garnish
- Vermont Common crackers, for serving
Place chicken, breast side down, in a large pot. Add enough water to just cover chicken. Add whole 1/2 onion, carrot halves, parsley, and peppercorns. Bring to a boil, partially covered. Reduce heat, and simmer gently for 1 hour. Remove chicken, and let cool. Strain broth through a fine sieve lined with cheesecloth into another pot, and bring to a simmer. Cook for 20 minutes to reduce and intensify flavor. Shred chicken into bite-size pieces, discarding bones and skin.
Melt butter in a large pot over medium heat. Add chopped onion and diced carrot, and cook until onion is translucent, about 5 minutes. Stir in flour, and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Whisk in reserved chicken broth, and bring to a boil. Add turnip, rutabaga or parsnip, and 2 1/2 teaspoons salt. Reduce heat, and simmer until root vegetables are tender, 6 to 8 minutes.
Stir in reserved chicken and the cream, and heat until warmed through, about 1 minute. Season with salt, and garnish with dill. Serve immediately with crackers on the side.