I know my last post was a soup recipe, but it’s really all I want to make and eat right now. Actually, soup and dessert. 🙂 This chowder has become one of my go-to soups. I never think of soup as a summer dish, but the first time I made it was when I had corn on the cob from the farmer’s market. I have since made it with frozen corn off the cob. It’s one step easier and more do-able in the winter.
This soup is sweet and savory; complex and comforting; fresh and healthy. The original recipe was vegan actually, though I typically use chicken broth instead of vegetable broth. It is creamy with coconut milk and the creamy corn, but dairy free. It’s meatless and gluten-free. These details might be appealing for some of you and a turn off for others. Trust me, it’s delicious. When I have shared it with people they have asked for the recipe, which is a sign that it is worthy of posting.
It has lime and cilantro in it- which are fresh and vibrant, and smoked paprika, cumin and oregano- which are warm and cozy. The roasted corn and hearty sweet potatoes make it a filling soup for a meatless dish. The poblano peppers add a tasty kick.
Sweet Potato Roasted Corn Chowder
Adapted from Two Peas & Their Pod
4 ears corn, shucked (Or 3 cups frozen corn- off the cob)
2 small poblano peppers
1 Tbsp. olive oil
1 onion, chopped
2 celery ribs, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 large sweet potato, peeled and diced (2 cups)
1 teaspoon oregano
1 tsp. cumin
1/2 tsp. smoked paprika
1 tsp. kosher salt
5 cups chicken broth (or vegetable broth)
1/3 cup chopped cilantro
1/2 cup coconut milk (canned from the international aisle)
1 Tbsp. fresh lime juice
Salt and pepper, to taste
Cilantro, lime wedges & avocado for garnish, optional
The Corn & the Poblanos: Place the poblanos on baking sheet under the broiler for about 10 minutes while using tongs to rotate them every couple of minutes. Place the cooked poblano peppers in a paper bag and close it tight. Let sit for 5 to 10 minutes to steam, this will make it easier to peel. Remove the skin and seeds from the poblano pepper and dice.
For the corn, I have grilled it if it’s on the cob, and charred with a stove top skillet If using corn off the cob. If off the cob, drizzle a little oil in a grill pan or skillet and cook over high heat until warm throughout and char marks are visible- stirring frequently as it roasts. If using corn on the cobb, after roasting it, stand each ear of corn up, stalk end down and use a sharp knife to slice the corn kernels off the cob.
[Alternately, you can cook both of these over a hot grill or gas flame. If using the grill, put the corn and peppers on the hot grill and char each side, 2 to 3 minutes per side, or until blistered and blackened. If using a gas flame, char the corn all over until at least half the kernels are blistered, and poblano until skin is blackened.]
Set the corn and peppers aside.
Prep the other vegetables (onion, celery, sweet potatoes, garlic)
In a large pot, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the chopped onion and celery and cook for 5 minutes, or until softened. Add the minced garlic and cook for a minute more. Add the diced sweet potatoes, oregano, cumin, smoked paprika, and salt. Stir.
Add the broth and Increase heat and bring to a simmer. Lower heat to maintain a simmer and cook for 10 to 12 minutes or until the potatoes are soft. Stir in the roasted corn and cook for 2 minutes.
Transfer about a third of the chowder to a blender and blend until smooth. [If you have an immersion blender you can blend the chowder in the pot, but don’t overdo it.] Stir the mixture back into the pot. You want there to be chunks.
Add the poblano peppers, coconut milk, cilantro, and lime juice and stir. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Ladle the chowder into the bowls and garnish with desired toppings. Serve warm.
I am slogging my way through winter.
Boy, this one feels harder than ever. I keep telling myself that each day of winter that passes means we are closer to spring. Sometimes I hear my mother’s voice in my head saying, “Do something for someone else when you are feeling low”. Life is so much more complex right now and tasks feel infinitely harder, such that I’m not sure what this outward focus looks like when the needs inside my home feel immense. Perhaps making this soup and setting bowls on the counter is my current act of service. And there is usually enough left over for a work day/school day lunch, and/or a jar to give away. These are gifts for the body and soul.
Another gift for the soul is this newly released album by J.J.Heller full of love songs/lullabies. It’s her 3rd volume. All three albums are sweet and soothing. It’s fun to hear new arrangements of old favorites (with the genius assistance of Ben Shive).