Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Summer Sweet Corn Soup

I was looking forward to posting photos taken in my garden yesterday, but I accidentally ran over my iphone charger/usb cord while vacuuming and it is no longer amongst the living. I hope to have it remedied soon, and photos will appear shortly thereafter.

It's been very enjoyable to walk home with a bag full of salad greens, tomatoes, carrots, onions and peas. Meals of late have been fantastic. I've never felt a closer connection to the food that I've been eating, and I find that it's comforting and rewarding at the same time.

Yesterday I made a sweet corn soup from a recipe so simple, I felt compelled to add a bit more to it. Instead of straight corn, onions, butter and water, I rehydrated some dried matsutake mushrooms that had been sent to me at work as a sample. I saved the water that I used to rehydrate the mushrooms with and used it as the base for the soup, which worked out well.

Sweet Corn Soup
(adapted from Alice Waters)

4T butter
1 diced onion
5-6 ears of sweet corn, shucked
1/4 cup dried mushrooms (more or less depending on desired strength)
1 cup boiling water
3 1/2 cups water
fresh herbs for garnish, like dill or oregano

-Put the dried mushrooms in a bowl and pour the cup of boiling water over top to cover them. Allow them to soften for 20-30 minutes.
-Meanwhile, cut the kernels from the corn cobs.
-Once soft, remove the mushrooms from the water, and reserve the water for the soup.
-Melt the butter in a heavy-bottomed soup pot over medium heat
-Add the diced onion and chopped mushrooms and cook until translucent, stirring enough to keep it from browning
-Season them with salt, then add the corn kernels.
-Cook the kernels with the mushrooms and onions for about 3 minutes, then add all of the water.
-Bring it to a boil, then immediately lower the heat to a simmer. Allow it to cook for about 5 minutes, or until the corn is done.
-Remove from the heat and puree in small batches in a blender, being careful not to splash hot soup on you when you blend it.
-You can pass it through a medium-mesh strainer to achieve a smooth consistency, or enjoy it a bit more rustic.

Serve it warm, and have salt and pepper nearby so you can season it to taste. Tear a few fresh herbs over top, or add a drop of creme fraiche to finish it off. It occurred to me only after eating that a crispy fried piece of prosciutto might be the perfect accompaniment....

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