i bought some nice danish sweetcorn and other nice grilling vegetables for our wedding reception, hoping the clouds would part and the sun would shine. too bad hoping for the best never got anyone anywhere... it rained almost the whole evening! so only a fraction of the corn was used that night; roasted in a very humid kitchen and chopped for a bean salad. corn didn't turn out to be the simple star of the show as i had hoped, but its day came eventually.
my chinese friend served corn soup as an appetizer one night and i was floored. soup isn't really something that i expect to taste so good, especially with such a humble ingredient as a base. when i asked her for the recipe i was a little surprised to see the seasonings were the usual suspects of garlic, onion, oregano, thyme, and lemon juice. maybe i was expecting some ancient chinese secret? me being arrogant and crazy and all, i wanted to try to asian it up a bit. that's right, i just verbed 'asian.' that's how crazy i am.
i boiled the corn lightly, no more than 9 minutes, before blanching them in cold water. after cutting off all the kernels, i threw the empty ears back into the pot to make stock. we're not wasting food. (:
3-4 ears of corn, kernels already removed
1 medium onion
3 cloves garlic
5cm knob of ginger
2 star anise
1 tbsp peppercorns
pinch of salt
quarter the onion and coarsely chop the garlic. skin the ginger with a spoon and cut it into nice, thin slices. throw everything into a pot, add enough water to cover the corn in one layer and bring to a boil. simmer for 15 minutes. strain when cool enough to handle.
kinda chinese corn soup
kernels from 3-4 ears of corn
1 tbsp oil for the pan
1 medium onion
2 clove garlic
2 tbsp soy sauce
dice the onions and fry them in oil over medium heat until they soften. add the corn and saute for a minute or so. mince the garlic and add that in, frying it only for about half a minute. you don't want to taste burnt garlic (or do you?). add the stock, soy sauce, and salt if needed. simmer for 10 minutes and bust out the immersion blender. puree the hell out of the soup (with caution!) or leave it a bit chunky like me. serve with a sprinkle of sesame seeds and sesame oil, maybe some black pepper too.
if you've got a lovely standing blender like i have recently acquired (thanks, girls!), it would be a good idea to wait until the soup is reasonably cool before pouring it in. unless you like the potential of cracked glass and hot soup all over your kitchen. as for the end result, it was not quite as good as my friend's original... next time i better just stick to the recipe. /: