Thursday, July 17, 2008

July Corn Chowder

There's a bright golden haze on the meadow,
There's a bright golden haze on the meadow,
The corn is as high as an elephant's eye,
An' it looks like it's climbin' clear up to the sky.

Oh, what a beautiful mornin',
Oh, what a beautiful day.
I got a beautiful feelin'
Ev'rything's goin' my way.


Lyrics by OSCAR HAMMERSTEIN II
Music by RICHARD RODGERS

I love summer food, especially corn on the cob. Fact is, I love corn off the cobb, too. Corn souffle, corn cakes, corn relish- whatever. I must be a little corny!

Well, the other day I learned the neatest trick while watching the Today Show. The chef cut the corn off the cob right into a Bundt pan. The corn cob rests in the center hole and the deep cake pan catches all the kernels as they are cut away. Brilliant.

I had to try it. Worked great, so I decided to make my favorite corn chowder. Here’s the lowfat recipe. Amazingly there is no cream in the soup, but it looks and tastes like a cream based calorie laden dish. Enjoy.

July Corn Chowder
Serves 8

1 chopped onion
6 cups (approximately 12 ears) fresh corn kernels, with any milk collected
3 cups chicken stock
½ cup finely chopped red bell pepper
½ teaspoon fresh rosemary
½ teaspoon dried thyme
Dash cayenne pepper
Salt & pepper to taste
1 tablespoon fresh basil- for garnish

Preheat a large, heavy saucepan over medium heat. Spray it well with vegetable or olive oil. Saute the onion about 5 minutes, until clear. Add 4 cups of the corn and saute 5 more minutes, until it softens a bit. Add 2 cups of the chicken stock and cook until the corn can be easily mashed- about 20-30 minutes.

Transfer the contents to a blender (I do this in 2 batches). Puree until smooth. Return the puree to the saucepan and lower the heat. Add the bell pepper, rosemary, thyme, pepper and remaining 1 cup of chicken stock and 2 cups of corn. Stir and cook for 10-15 minutes, until thick and creamy.

Garnish with chopped basil when serving.
The soup is equally good the next day.

Original recipe by Rosie Daley, from the cookbook In the Kitchen with Rosie. Alfred Knopf publishers, NY 1994.

No comments: