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Summer Corn Soup

Summer Corn Soup

by Ellen Fruchtman, President We’re nearing the end of corn season (spoken like a true Midwesterner), so this is the perfect time for this yummy soup from one of my favorite chefs, Jennifer Segal. It’s easy, low calorie, and utterly delicious.

Summer Corn Soup

  • 4 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1 heaping cup chopped shallots
  • 6 cups low sodium chicken broth
  • 6 ears fresh corn (yellow or white)
  • 1 ¼ tsp kosher salt
  • ½ tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 ½ tbsp fresh basil (finely chopped)
  • 1 ½ tsp fresh thyme (finely chopped)
  1. Remove the husks and silks from the corn. Set one ear of corn aside. Use a knife to cut the kernels off of the remaining 5 cobs, then break the scraped cobs in half. Set aside.

  2. Melt the butter in a large pot over medium-low heat. Add the shallots and cook, stirring often, until soft and translucent, 8-10 minutes. Add the chicken stock, corn kernels, broken cobs, whole ear of corn, salt, and pepper to the pot. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to medium-low and cook uncovered for 10 minutes. Remove the whole ear of corn and set aside to cool. Cook the soup for 10 minutes more, then remove the broken cobs from the pot and discard.

  3. Off the heat, use a handheld immersion blender to purée the soup until very smooth. It will take a few minutes. If you need to use a blender, simply do this in batches. Place a fine-mesh sieve over a large bowl and pass the soup through, using a back of a ladle to push the soup through in circular motions. (I have to admit, I didn’t do this since my immersion blender worked well and I liked some of the texture.) Discard the fibers and bits of kernels in the sieve. Return the strained soup to a clean pot. It should have a creamy consistency. If it's too thick, thin it with water or chicken stock; if it's too thin, cook over medium heat until thickened.

  4. Use a knife to cut the cooked kernels off of the cooled whole cob, then add the kernels to the soup along with the herbs. Taste and adjust seasoning with salt and pepper (if necessary, you can add a bit of sugar to bring out the corn's natural sweetness). Ladle the soup into bowls and garnish with tiny sprigs of fresh basil and thyme, if desired. Serve hot or cold.

  5. Note: If you have a high-powered blender, like a Vitamix, you may be able to skip the step of straining the soup.

  6. Note: Be sure to get fresh-picked corn and cook it as soon as possible. As soon as it is picked, corn starts converting sugar to starch which reduces sweetness. If you're not going to cook it right away, store it in the refrigerator as it slows down the conversion process.

  7. Freezer-Friendly Instructions: The soup can be frozen for up to 3 months. Defrost the soup in the refrigerator for 12 hours and then reheat it on the stovetop over medium heat until hot.

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