fresh corn soup topped with roasted corn guacamole

August 9, 2013 § 64 Comments

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The other day I stopped off at Whole Foods on my way home from work to gather something quick for dinner.  It was already pushing 6pm and I am usually home and have most of the dinner prep work completed by this time in the evening.  Perhaps a caesar salad and something else from the deli would suffice.  I walked through the door and the fresh yellow and white corn display brought me to a sudden halt.  I could just pick up a few ears to add to the salad idea, but no, my first thought was corn soup!   I considered bringing the corn home, look into a soup recipe and make it for dinner tomorrow.   Well, knowing corn needs to be prepared the same day you bring it home I decided to step aside and search for a corn soup recipe, right then and there, in Whole Foods.  (thank goodness for smart phones)  After glancing through the ingredient list from several recipes I found this fresh, spicy, naturally creamy corn soup recipe on Epicurious.   I gathered the few ingredients I needed and headed home.  Simple enough.

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This is similar to a corn chowder, yet lighter and texturally alive with the roasted corn guacamole on top.  We loved using fresh corn right off the cob for this soup and we upped the heat a little by leaving the seeds in the jalapeño.  It was one of those special soups you’ll never forget.  And I always love to hear, “can we have it again…tomorrow?”   If you are considering to prepare this soup…which I urge you to do, please be aware I am posting the method exactly the way I prepared it, however, see my note at the bottom of the recipe “Next time I prepare this soup….” 

Adapted from Epicurious (reprinted with permission from Simply Mexican by Lourdes Castro).

i n g r e d i e n t s

roasted corn guacamole

  • kernels from 3 ears fresh corn
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped red onion
  • 2 tablespoons fresh cilantro, finely chopped
  • 1 lime, finely grated zest and juice
  • 1 jalapeño, stemmed, 1/2 seeded, finely chopped
  • 1 avocado, pitted and diced

soup

  • kernels from 5 ears fresh corn
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1/2 red onion, chopped
  • 1 jalapeño, stemmed and chopped
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 1/2 cups stock (vegetable or chicken)
  • cilantro sprigs, to garnish

m e t h o d

Preheat your oven to 450°F.  Ask someone to “shuck” the corn for you while you start to clean, peel, chop, dice and grate all of the ingredients.

Put the corn on the cob on a parchment lined baking sheet and brush with olive oil, sprinkle salt and pepper and roast for 30 minutes until corn turns a golden brown.  Remove the corn for the oven and allow to cool. Slice the corn kernels off of the cob and set aside.

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soup

Combine the oil and garlic in a soup pot over medium heat.  Once the garlic is aromatic add the onion and jalapeño.  Season with salt and pepper and sauté until the vegetables are soft and translucent, about 5 minutes.  Add the corn to the pot and using a hand blender puree until it has a smooth texture.

Turn up the heat to medium high and slowly add the stock to the pot while stirring.  Bring to a boil, lower the heat to a simmer and allow to cook for 15 minutes.

roasted corn guacamole

Combine the roasted corn, red onion, cilantro, lime zest, lime juice and jalapeño in a bowl and mix well.  Gently stir in the avocado.  Season with salt and pepper.

Ladle the soup into bowls.  Place a generous spoonful of the guacamole in the center of each bowl and a sprig or two of cilantro.  Serve right away!

Serves 4.

Next time I prepare this soup…

After preparing this soup I learned it is better to remove the kernels from the cob before roasting them.  Not only is this quicker because you do not have to wait for the corn to cool off before slicing the kernels, but it also helps caramelized the corn during roasting which intensifies the flavor of the soup.  After cutting the uncooked kernel off of the cob toss in olive oil, salt and pepper and scatter onto a parchment lined baking sheet and roast for 20 minutes in a 450°F oven.

cool summer borscht

July 31, 2013 § 57 Comments

We have a serious affection for beets around here.  I have been baking beets every week for the past several, therefore it only seemed natural to seek out a beet soup recipe.  I prefer my soups warm  with the exception of gazpacho, which to me is much like salsa.  I can eat bowls and bowls of gazpacho!  Knowing we love beet salad with toasted walnuts and goat cheese I had a feeling we would also enjoy a cool borscht. I read a few recipes, gathered a few ideas and came up with my own palate pleasing soup.  Bringing in the beet salad idea we used toasted walnuts and goat cheese crumbles to top it off.  A soup and salad in one bowl!

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I n g r e d i e n t s

  • 5 medium fresh beets
  • 2 cups vegetable stock
  • 16 ounces greek yogurt
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons red wine vinegar
  • 1 large cucumber, seeds removed and diced
  • 1/2 cup chopped scallions
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts, dry toasted
  • crumbled goat cheese
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill, plus extra for serving

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Place the beets in a large pot of boiling salted water and cook uncovered until the beets are tender, 30 to 40 minutes. Remove the beets to a bowl with a slotted spoon and set aside to cool. Strain the cooking liquid through a fine sieve and also set aside to cool.

In a large bowl, whisk together 1 1/2 cups of the beet cooking liquid, the vegetable stock, yogurt, lemon juice, vinegar, salt and pepper.

Peel the cooled beets with a small paring knife or rub the skins off with your hands. Dice the beets into small/medium bite size pieces. Add the beets, cucumber, scallions, and dill to the soup.  Cover and chill for at least 4 hours or overnight.

Prior to serving, place the walnut bits in a dry, non stick skillet over medium heat and cook until toasted and brown, giving the skillet a shake every now and them.

Season soup with salt and pepper, serve cool with a sprinkling of crumbled goat cheese, toasted walnuts and an extra sprig of fresh dill.

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