Monday, May 17, 2010

Spicy Corn Chowder

Holy lord is this soup spicy.  Granted, I made the bold choice of leaving the seeds in our serrano peppers.  I think we each drank two glasses of water along with our soup (great dieting strategy - you get full faster! Okay I'm only kidding, but it's sort of true). 

I love the flavors of this soup - only I drowned them out a bit with spice.  I'd recommend you de-seed your serrano chiles and then put them in the soup.   The result is a sweet yet spicy corn chowder with delicious salty bacon on top.  It's a little creamy and a little crazy.  It's lovely. 

This post might seem out of the blue, but believe it or not, sweet corn is popping up already in the farmers market!  I got some in my CSA bag last week, much to my shock.  So it seemed perfect to make full use of the corn as this soup does - cob and all!  You are literally milking the corn for everything it's worth.  It's a labor of love, but the corn rewards you.  It really does.

Spicy Corn Chowder
adapted from Williams-Sonoma's Essentials of Healthful Cooking
serves 3


2 ears corn, husks removed
1/2 cup half and half
1 small yellow onion, cut into a large dice
1 medium-sized red skinned potato, cut into a large dice
2 serrano peppers, seeds and ribs removed, and diced
2 scallions, green parts only, thinly sliced
salt to taste
2 slices uncured, nitrate-free bacon


1.  Cut the corn kernels from the cob over a large bowl to catch them.  (It's easiest if you invert a small bowl inside the large bowl and rest the cob on the small bowl as you slice off the kernels - the large bowl will catch them.)  

2.  Use the blunt side of the knife to scrape the cobs afterwards to get all the "milk" out.  Place the corn, cobs, and milk in a medium Dutch oven or soup pot.  Add 3 cups of water and turn on the heat to high.  Bring to a boil, then reduce to a gentle boil and cook for about 10 minutes.

3.  Pour the mixture into a sieve over a large bowl, so the bowl catches the broth and the corn gets caught in the sieve.  Discard the cobs  (try to squeeze the juices out if you can, but don't burn your hand).  Set aside half the corn.  Pour half the corn broth back into the empty Dutch oven.

4.  Place the other half of the broth and corn into a food processor or blender, and add the half and half.  Puree until smooth and creamy.  Set aside.

5.  Add the onion, potato, and serrano peppers to the broth in the Dutch oven and turn the heat to high.  Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer, and cook until the potatoes are tender, about 10 minutes.  Pour the creamy corn broth mixture into the pot, add the green onions, and season the soup to taste with salt. 

6.  While the soup cooks, cook the bacon in a skillet over medium heat, flipping often, until crispy.   Ladle the soup into bowls and top with crumbled bacon.  (Leave off the bacon if you want this to be vegetarian).


1 comment:

  1. No waste from your CSA items - good for you! (And I agree about your theory regarding drinking water - it DOES fill you up!)