Thai Corn Chowder
When planning your dinner menu during a hot week in August, a chowder probably wouldn’t be high on your list. Or on your list at all. It was on mine, though, but I’m weird like that. (It’s also in the 70s here for most of the summer, so . . .)
Actually this vegetarian chowder wasn’t heavy at all. The slight creaminess comes from coconut milk instead of cream, and it had enough vegetables and fresh herbs that I thought it was totally appropriate for summer. Steve and I both loved the variety of flavors in this. And Sophie liked it, too (but picked out all the vegetables. . . sigh.)
This will be one of a few recipes coming featuring fresh corn! (Although frozen corn would also work well in any of these) I beat zucchini to death, so I figure corn could be next. Are you ready? :)
Thai Corn Chowder
4 ears corn
2 c diced red-skinned potatoes (about 12 oz)
3/4 c chopped green onions
2 T grated peeled fresh ginger
4 cloves garlic, smashed
8 black peppercorns
1 stalk lemongrass, cut into thirds (optional)
4 T butter
1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and minced
1 13.5-ounce can coconut milk
8 fresh basil leaves
8 fresh mint leaves
4 radishes, thinly sliced
1/4 c roughly chopped fresh cilantro
Juice of 1/2 lime, plus lime wedges for garnish
1 tomato, seeded and diced
Cut kernels off of corn, reserving the cobs. Set aside. Combine the cobs, 1 c potatoes, 1/2 c green onions, 1 T ginger, the garlic, peppercorns and 5 cups of water in a pot. Smash the lemongrass, if using, and add to the pot. Bring to a boil, then simmer for 25-30 minutes.
About 10 minutes before broth is finished, melt the butter over medium-high heat in a separate pot. Add remaining potatoes, sprinkle with salt and cook until slightly soft, about 5 minutes. Add remaining Tablespoon ginger and jalapeno; cook 1 minute. Add the corn and cook until vegetables are just tender, about 3-4 minutes.
Strain the broth, pressing out as much liquid as possible. (And smashing the potatoes through, if you can.) Discard the remaining solids. Add 2 cups of the strained broth to the potatoes and corn; bring to a boil, cover and simmer for 10 minutes. Add coconut milk, basil and mint; season with salt. Stir until simmering. Remove from heat and add the radishes, cilantro and lime juice. Top with diced tomatoes and remaining 1/4 c green onions and serve with lime wedges.
Probably serves 3-4, but Steve and I at the whole pot ourselves.
1. I didn't use lemongrass, but I should have. And I totally could have. A lady I know at church, from Thailand, grows it in her backyard. But we aren't to that point in our relationship where I can hop her fence and steal from her garden.
from Food Network Magazine Aug/Sept 2009