It's the time of year to throw a zucchini into everything we can. I know, I know, it's folly to think a household of three could make a dent in a backyard garden's zucchini production. Could a barnyard of pigs? I wonder.
For this soup, however, the zucchini was Plan B, after all, the goal was corn chowder not a mixed vegetable soup. But Plan A's farmers-market corn was wormy, only three of six ears were edible, the other three went straight to compost. But it turns out, I loved the zucchini addition, it not only added volume but also balanced the corn's natural sweetness. Besides? Color! The green inspired the addition of still more color, orange grated carrot.
RECIPE for CURRIED CORN CHOWDER with COCONUT MILK
Time to table: 60 minutes
Makes 4 1/2 cups
2 tablespoon butter
Sprig fresh thyme
1 tablespoon curry powder
1 large onion, roughly chopped
2 cloves garlic, sliced
1 medium zucchini, roughly chopped
3 ears corn, kernels and "milk" (How to Cut Corn Off the Cob: Keeping All Ten Fingers, Capturing Every Delicious Kernel and Every Drop of Sweet Corn "Milk")
1 pinch sugar
4 cups stock
Salt & pepper to taste, be generous
1 cup coconut milk
1 carrot, grated, for color
Fresh basil ribbons, for color and freshness
In a large, heavy pot, melt butter on medium-low heat. Add the thyme and let warm until aromatic. Add curry powder, let warm until aromatic. Add onion and garlic and stir to coat with fat, gently cook until onion begins to turn golden, watch the heat, butter has what's called a "low smoke point" and can easily burn if the stove temperature is too high.
Increase heat to medium. Add the zucchini, corn, sugar and stock and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to maintain a simmer, let cook, stirring occasionally, until zucchini and corn are cooked, about 15 minutes. Taste occasionally and season with salt and pepper.
Remove the thyme sprig. With an immersion blender, purée just a bit, thickening the soup but ensuring that the zucchini and corn remain identifiable. Add the coconut milk and carrot, let simmer until carrot is soft, about 15 minutes.
To serve, stir in fresh basil and serve hot.
MAKE-AHEAD This soup can be made a day or even two ahead of time up to the point of adding the coconut milk and carrot.
LEFTOVERS The leftovers reheat beautifully.
VARIATIONS For a slightly thinner and less rich soup, add another 1 to 2 cups of stock. The curry flavor isn't "too curry-ish" but for anyone who's sensitive to curry, use a single teaspoon curry powder. You could also serve this with a dollop of basil pesto, it would stir in beautifully. For a vegan soup, use olive oil instead of butter to sauté the onion.
ALANNA'S TIPS & KITCHEN NOTES
TEXTURE This soup's texture is important, that's why I suggest pureeing it to thicken but leave the individual ingredients discernible vs fully turning it into "one blended soup" in a blender or food processor.
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MORE FAVORITE SUMMER CHOWDER RECIPES~ Raw Corn Chowder ~
~ Summer's Best Corn Chowder ~
~ more soup recipes ~
from A Veggie Venture
~ Finnish Summer Soup ~
~ Summer Seafood Chowder ~
~ Salmon Chowder ~
~ Chillin': Favorite Chili, Chowder & Cornbread Recipes ~
from Kitchen Parade, my food column
SEASONAL EATING: THIS SAME WEEK ACROSS THE YEARSBroiled Tomatoes with Oregano New Potatoes with Fresh Herbs Lavender Potatoes Tomato Cocktail Yellow Squash Soup with Spinach: Early Autumn Leaves in Soup Golden Carrots Slow-Roasted Tomato Soup Garlicky Romano Beans Fresh Crowder Peas Chard & Chickpeas with Feta Eight-Ball Stuffed Zucchini Fresh Tomato & Basil Stuffed Peppers Zucchini Fritters Quick Pattypan Squash Perfect Stovetop Brown Rice Swiss Chard Skillet Supper with Tomatoes, Corn, Fresh Dill & Feta (< hello Meatless Monday!) Creamy Cucumber-Tomato Salsa (< Pinterest loves it!) Twice-Roasted Beets with Red Grapes, Cherries, Blueberries & Avocado Feta Cream (< dreamy good!) Cheesy Cauliflower Casserole with Caprese Tomatoes
famous asparagus-to-zucchini Alphabet of Vegetables.
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