Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Corn 101

Me oh my, hasn’t corn been getting a bad rap recently? Freaking Micheal Pollan and his “we’re all just corn people,” preaching.

To fill in my non-Pollan readers. From a review of his New York Times bestselling book:

“Readers of "The Omnivore's Dilemma" will learn that the bulk of the American diet comes from one plant: corn. Grown on massive farms, oceans' worth of the golden kernels and green stalks are then processed, deconstructed, and reassembled in factories into everything from a Chicken McNugget to salad dressing. We eat so much corn that, biologically speaking, most Americans are corn on two legs.”

The Mayans agreed with this idea. Sorta. They believed that they were created by gods who added their own blood to flour made from corn, thus considering themselves the children of corn and worshipping accordingly.

Me and Alayna? We just enjoy ourselves an ear of corn when the time is right. Like it is right now in the summer. I’ll admit buying six ears of corn in Key Foods on Avenue A while being mildly assaulted by an ambitious beggar isn’t the most ideal place to buy corn—I prefer a veggie stand you swing into on your way to the seashore...

Wherever you get your corn get ready for a treat. This seemingly basic soup is loaded in flavor. Granted Alayna and I are not used to waiting an hour while the soup simmers, which is why I should add a bottle of wine to the ingredient list.

We’ve also had a tub of plain yogurt from the cucumber wonder soup a few blog posts back and have since realized a dollop or two of yogurt on top of most soups is pretty tasty. So throw it on unless you are trying to impress your vegan buddies.

Enjoy corn friends.

Alayna, corning around.

Sweet Corn Soup
  • Take half of one large white onion, cut it into quarters and put into the pot
  • Roughly chop about a half pound of carrots and add to the pot as well
  • Crush 3-4 peeled cloves of garlic with the flat part of your knife, and throw those in the pot as well
  • With a serrated knife, cut the corn away from the cobs of 6 ears of sweet corn, and set aside the kernels
  • Throw the cobs into the pot with some (light!) salt and pepper and fill about halfway with water
  • Bring the entire concoction to a boil, and then let it simmer for an hour... at the end of the hour, add more salt and pepper to taste and turn off the pot

  • In a separate pan, saute two cloves of garlic (chopped) and the other half of the white onion (also chopped) in olive oil with a sprinkling of turmeric
  • Once the garlic and onion are transparent, add in the reserved corn
  • Cook covered, stirring occasionally, until the kernels are cooked through (I don't know how to describe it, but if you taste, you'll know
  • Once the corn is done, take the cobs out of the soup pot, and add in the kernels... let it sit for a few minutes, and then blend as smoothly as possible
  • Optional: Serve with a dollop of plain yogurt or sour cream if you still have some left from the past two weeks, because that really is going to go bad soon :)

Corn kids!

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