As promised, here is the delicious corn chowder (that I made 3 times in about a week and a half!). I promise you if you get a corn stripper, it will be a snap getting the kernels off of the cob (and not all over your counter). Also, fresh corn...like from the farmer's market, or if you are lucky enough to have a connection to get farm fresh corn, makes a huge difference in the ease of getting the milk from the cob. The first time I made this, I used store bought corn and it was still tasty, but I really had to work to get the milk from the cob. The next 2 times were with fresh corn, and the corn was so juicy that getting the milk from the cob was super easy;)
Corn Chowder (from the July and August 2011 Cooks Illustrated)
8 ears of corn, husks and silk removed
3 tbsp unsalted butter
1 onion, chopped fine
4 slices of bacon, halved lengthwise, then cut crosswise into 1/4 inch pieces
2 tsp minced fresh thyme (I used about 3/4 tsp of dried)
salt and pepper
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
5 cups water
3/4 pound red potatoes, cut into 1/2 inch pieces
1 cup half-and-half
1. Remove the kernels from the corn; transfer to a bowl and set aside. Use the back of a butter knife to scrape the cob over a different bowl and remove the milk and and pulp. Place a clean kitchen towel in a bowl and pour the milk/pulp into the center of it. Squeeze the towel until all/most of the corn juice is extracted. Set corn juice aside.
2. Melt butter in a dutch oven over medium heat; add onion, bacon, thyme, 2 tsp salt, and 1 tsp pepper. Cook, stirring frequently, until onion is softened and edges are beginning to brown, about 8-10 minutes. Stir in flour and cook, stirring constantly for 2 minutes. Whisking constantly, gradually add water and bring to a boil. Add kernels and potatoes. Return to simmer; reduce heat to medium low and cook until potatoes have softened, about 15-18 minutes.
3. Process 2 cups corn chowder in blender until smooth and return puree back to chowder; add half-and-half and return to simmer. Remove pot from heat and stir in reserved corn juice. Season to taste with salt, pepper, and up to 1 tbsp of sugar.