Inspired by the killer demo by Ingrid Hoffmann at the Summit Wine & Food Festival last week (more on that later), I wanted something light and easy for dinner with fresh ingredients. Traveling on the back roads to and from Summit, New Jersey, I noticed that they had a bunch of little farm stands with signage that heralded the arrival of Jersey’s bounty. I stopped at Sweet Life Farms and I got to shoppin’ with a bunch of farm fresh goodies for my pantry and, quite frankly, it was cheaper than going to your local Whole Paychex. Plus, two of the main ingredients in this recipe are fresh corn and tomatoes and, hello, I WAS in New Jersey.
I decided to improvise a bit with this recipe and, like Ingrid says, use her recipes for inspiration and make them your own. The end result – a tried & true recipe for Mexican Corn Soup that will replace ANY canned corn soup that you might have in your pantry.
- 1 medium poblano pepper
- 4 ears of fresh corn
- 2 tomatoes, cored and chopped roughly
- 4 cups of chicken stock, divided
- 1/2 tsp. of dried Mexican oregano
- 1/2 tsp. of smoked paprika
- 4 slices of thick bacon
- 1 small onion or 1/2 of a medium onion
- 2 cloves garlic
- Coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1/2 cup heavy cream or half & half (optional)
- 3 tbsp. chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
- 1/2 cup queso fresco, crumbled (or, alternatively – a MILD feta cheese)
- Sour Cream & Tortilla chips for garnish
- Roast the poblano pepper over either an open flame on a gas range or under a broiler.
- Once the pepper is roasted, place the pepper in a plastic bag and steam for 10 minutes.
- Remove the charred skin from the pepper, deseed the poblano, chop the pepper finely and set aside.
- Using a sharp knife, remove the corn kernels from the cobs.
- Reserve half of the corn kernels for later and use and place the remaining corn kernels in a blender (DO NOT USE A FOOD PROCESSOR - TRUST ME – HUGE MESS! Not like I tried it or anything cough cough).
- To the blender, add tomatoes, 2 cups of chicken stock, smoked paprika and oregano. Puree until smooth and set aside.
- Over medium heat, cook the bacon in a large saucepan, turning once until brown & crisp.
- Drain the bacon on a paper towel lined plate and set aside.
- Add the onion to the bacon fat in the saucepan and cook until the onion turns translucent.
- Add the chopped poblano pepper and garlic and stir for another minute.
- To the onion, pepper and garlic mixture, add the corn puree to the saucepan with an additional 2 cups of chicken stock.
- Bring to a low boil and add the reserved corn kernels.
- Simmer over medium-low heat until the soup has thickened (about 20 minutes or so).
- Stir occasionally and season with salt and pepper.
- To finish, mix in the heavy cream and half of the parsley and heat through.
- To serve, garnish with the remaining parsley, crumbled bacon, the queso fresco and tortilla chips.
Adapted from Ingrid Hoffmann
Gathering the ingredients
Time for the bacon – (and, btw – Ingrid’s Simply Delicioso Caldero ROCKS – no mess, no fuss.)
Oops – I almost forgot the poblano!
Best use for a Bundt pan ever!
Now, DO NOT – stress DO NOT put it in a food processor. Oy what a mess
Instead, follow Ingrid’s instructions and into the blender goes the fresh Jersey corn and tomatoes
A little cream adds to the richness of the soup
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