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June 25, 2009 in soup / chili2 comments

chilled corn and coconut soup

chilled corn and coconut soup

The only cold soup I’ve been a fan of is gazpacho, and I haven’t had it in years because I can’t find any place around here or any recipe that makes it the right way, with bread.

Other than Sevilla-made gazpacho, spooning a cold pureéd liquid into my maw just has never been a thrilling thought. What’s the point? It’s cold, drippy, and lacking texture.

This corn and coconut milk soup from June’s Martha Stewart Living, however, has me rethinking that position a bit. I realized a chilled soup does indeed have a reason to exist, and that’s as an appetizer or side dish. A chilled soup is never going to make the center of a meal, but with a salad or sandwich, or if you have people over and you’re feeling fancy, soups like this fill a niche.

And the simplicity of this particular recipe helps. The only fussy part is straining the soup after pureéing, and I learned the hard way that the straining does need to be done, unless you like gumming on detached corn kernel hulls (yum!).

This chilled corn and coconut milk soup is rich, punctuated by diffuse heat from the jalapeño, and tempered with some balancing tang by a bit of lime juice. Permeating it all is, of course, the sweet aroma of corn blended with the oh-so-subtle base of coconut milk.

Best of all, however, is the cool palest green color the soup takes on from the jalapenõ. I feel like I’ve had a dip in the pool just looking at it, calmed and refreshed. I used white-kerneled corn and encourage you to seek it out if you want the same pale green; yellow corn will make the soup pale yellow.

Corn is ready or nearly so in the warmer parts of the country, and we’ll have it here in a few weeks. In the meantime, frozen corn works just dandy in this.

Have a cup of this with a loose-leaf lettuce salad lightly dressed with vinaigrette, or, when entertaining, as a prelude to a fish main course, such as asian salmon on quinoa. It will pair well with a sandwich on hearty whole-grain bread, too. Read more on chilled corn and coconut soup…

foodbuzz 24, 24, 24: rhubarb — it’s not just for pie anymore

rhubarb salsa

Rhubarb with caramelized onions? Rhubarb salsa? Rhubarb and lentil potage? I can hear you now, the ornery ones of you that is: What the hell, woman…rhubarb’s for pie. Crisps. Crunches.

prepping peppers, onion, jalapeño, and cilantro for the rhubarb salsa

For April’s Foodbuzz 24, 24, 24 event, I decided to explore the savory side of rhubarb, since there’s a ton of it growing about 50 feet from my front door. As rhubarb is technically a vegetable/herb, why not try some recipes that utilize rhubarb as a vegetable?

chop the rhubarb for the salsa finely. you don't wanna crunch into a big honkin' piece of this stuff.

Hey, salsa has a tangy bite. I bet rhubarb could work in salsa. So I tracked down a viable candidate in The Joy of Rhubarb: The Versatile Summer Delight. It’s a classic Mexican salsa, with fresh cilantro, green onion (which made me happy; I can’t stand regular onions raw), lime juice, jalapeño for a bit of bite, barely-blanched rhubarb, and lots of sweet peppers and more sugar than salsa normally would have, to counteract the rhubarb’s bite.

colorful rhubarb salsa ingredients :)

Dad’s verdict? “It would be great on hamburgers. By the way, we’re having hamburgers tonight….” Subtle hint there, Dad. ;-) Yeah, he went home with some rhubarb salsa. Linda thought it had a bit of a bitter rhubarb taste to it and suggested more sweetener. I loved it. Fresh, crisp, clean salsa taste with the rhubarb adding uniqueness without overpowering it.

Overall verdict for rhubarb salsa: Two snaps up. Read more on foodbuzz 24, 24, 24: rhubarb — it’s not just for pie anymore…

September 29, 2010 in main course, soup / chili, vegan, vegetarian3 comments

gazpacho sevillano

gazpacho sevillano

Breakfast in Spain is unsubstantial, to my taste: a toasted and buttered bolillo (a large roll) and café con leche, Spain’s rich and tasty version of the latte. (I don’t like coffee or even lattes particularly, but I’ll take a café con leche any day.) Supper, as well, is fairly insubstantial: fried finger foods or a light platter of leftovers, served at 11 p.m., midnight, or even later, depending on the night-owlishness of your household. Read more on gazpacho sevillano…

January 6, 2010 in main course, soup / chili, vegan, vegetarian3 comments

winter soup of carrots, lentils, apple, and sweet potato

How about a nice bowl of cheery orange-colored soup to warm your tummy on a cold winter night? I only recently began to appreciate soup, having been too lazy to properly appreciate it in the past — soup isn’t often stick-to-your-ribs fare and I’m pretty side-dish impaired, as far as getting out bread or making a salad to go with the soup. Read more on winter soup of carrots, lentils, apple, and sweet potato…