This recipe embraces the best that New Jersey has to offer in the summer months. We use Lemon Thyme, the lightest green herb in this photo from our garden. Enjoy the summer!
ROASTED CORN CHOWDER
CHANTERELLE MUSHROOMS, GRAPE TOMATOES, JALAPEÑO,
AND LEMON THYME
6 Ears of Corn
2 White Onions, chopped into 1 inch pieces
4 Cloves of Garlic, crushed
4 Sprigs of Thyme
2 Quarts of Water
1/2 Cup Whole Milk
2 TBSP Canola Oil
8 Ounces Chanterelle Mushrooms, cleaned very well
1 TBSP Fresh Lemon Thyme
12 Grape Tomatoes, cut in half
1 TBSP Sweet Unsalted Butter
2 TBSP Jalapeño Purée, recipe follows
2 Jalapeños, seeds removed
1 tsp Sugar
2 tsp Champagne Vinegar
4 TBSP Olive Oil
1 Pinch of Salt
Put all of the ingredients into a blender and purée until smooth.
Remove the corn kernels from the cob and chop the cobs into 2 inch pieces. In a 6 quart pot heat the canola oil over medium heat and add the onions. Season with a pinch of salt and sweat the onions for approximately 3 minutes. Add the chopped corn cobs, garlic, and thyme sprigs and sweat for another three minutes. Add another pinch of salt and add the 2 quarts of water. Bring the water to a boil and then simmer for 30 minutes.
While the corn stock is simmering heat a cast iron pan over high heat. When the pan is extremely hot add the corn kernels so they are covering the bottom of the pan in a thin layer. Do not add any oil. The corn will begin to smoke and as it roasts in the pan you will want to move it around with a wooden spoon so as to get even color on the kernels. When the corn has an even roasted look, scoop it onto a plate to cool. Repeat this process with all of the corn kernels. The corn can be roasted as much or as little as you like.
After the corn stock has simmered for 30 minutes, strain the liquid through a fine mesh strainer into a clean 4 quart pot. Add ¾ of the roasted corn kernels and the milk to the corn stock. Reserve the remaining corn kernels as garnish for the soup. Simmer this for approximately 10 minutes to allow all of the flavors to develop. Purée the corn soup in a blender and pass through a fine mesh strainer. Adjust the seasoning if necessary. The soup can be reserved warm to be eaten immediately or cooled and saved for the next day.
To finish the garnish for the soup melt the tablespoon of butter in a sauté pan until it browns lightly. Add the chanterelle mushrooms and cook over medium heat until they are dry and golden brown. Season with a pinch of salt and add the reserved corn kernels. Cook for 1 minute more and add the tomatoes and lemon thyme. Remove the pan from the heat and gently toss the garnish to make sure the tomatoes are warmed, but not hot. If the tomatoes cook too much they will fall apart and they will lose the refreshing bite they give to the soup. Divide the garnish into four soup bowls. Ladle 6 ounces of the corn soup into each bowl. Drizzle some of the jalapeño purée into each soup and enjoy.