Sweet and Spicy Poblano-Corn Chowder

The Kitchen Beet - Poblano Corn Chowder

I mentioned in the last post that I have lots of recipes in the queue, and one of my frequent issues is not having the photos to go with. I would be so much more productive if someone could just follow me around and take pictures (and, um, clean up after me) while I rip through the kitchen like a tornado on a mission. Soup is cooking! Start chopping kale and shredding carrots! Put the pistachio-honey crumble on the bars and get them in the oven! Let’s go! In fairness, my husband is remarkably loving and generous when it comes to cleaning up my kitchen messes. I apparently just need a photographer to really be productive with getting recipes out to you, ha! Since I don’t have that, I’m thankful I had the time and light to take pictures while preparing a meal for The Thirty-Two Project yesterday. This sweet and spicy poblano-corn chowder is one of my all-time favorite summer soups.

My mom gave me a version of this recipe, which was given to her from someone else, and I’ve tweaked it in several ways. So thank you to whomever the idea for this one originated from! You’ll need 4 cups of fresh, cooked corn kernels to start (which is about 8 cobs), split into two 2 cup measurements. If you are local, please RUN to S&V Country Market and get your corn. I’m sure there are lots of other wonderful farms for corn as well, but I really love the flavor and size of S&V corn. (And to the awesome woman working at the stand this past Wednesday who loaded up my 20+ cobs – thank you!)

The ingredients for this soup are listed below, but I have a few notes for you first – cook your corn in boiling water for 5 minutes, then remove. Unless you have a giant pot, you’ll need to do this in batches. Do this before anything else, so you can let the corn cool. This makes it easier to cut off the cob. There’s plenty of chopping to do while you’re waiting for it to cool! Also, you’ll notice measurements for milk and cream below. I have successfully used half-and-half for the entire amount, so know you can make that swap if needed. Finally, feel free to give yourself room to move with the measurements – soup is often forgiving. Vegetables are beautiful in all shapes and sizes. If your sweet red pepper gives you a little more than a cup, that’s fine! If you don’t have enough tomatoes, no worries.

Total Corn Needed:
4 cups fresh corn kernels, cooked for 5 min and cut of the cob (about 8 good-sized cobs)

In the Blender:
2 cups fresh corn kernels, cooked for 5 min and cut off the cob
1/2 cup milk
1/3 cup heavy cream

In the Soup Pot/Dutch Oven:
2 TBSP coconut oil
1 cup white onion, diced
1 cup sweet red pepper, diced (about 1 pepper)
1 cup poblano pepper, diced (about 2 peppers)
2 tsp garlic, minced
1/2 cup zucchini, diced (about 1 small)
1 tsp salt
2 cups fresh corn kernels, cooked for 5 min and cut off the cob
2 cups vegetable broth
1 tsp sugar
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
3/4 cup tomatoes, diced
1 cup pepper jack cheese, shredded

To Garnish:
scallions
avocado
cilantro

As I mentioned above, start by cooking your corn for 5 minutes, then removing from the pot. Set aside until it has cooled enough to handle. While it’s cooling, start chopping! You’ll want to have your onion, red pepper, poblano pepper, garlic and zucchini cut before you warm the coconut oil in the pot.

In your large soup pot or dutch oven, warm 2 TBSP of coconut oil over medium heat until just melted. Add your white onion and cook, stirring occasionally, for about 8 minutes. Next, you’ll add your red pepper, poblano pepper and garlic. Let that saute, again stirring occasionally, for 3 minutes. Add your zucchini and salt and saute for another 2 – 4 minutes. I always sneak pieces of pepper and zucchini around the 2-minute mark to see if it’s tender, or needs another minute. (Note: while the sautéing is happening, this is a good time to cut all the corn off the cob and blend half of it with milk and cream in your blender!)

Add your cooked corn (2 cups) that was NOT blended with the milk+cream, vegetable broth, sugar and cayenne pepper. Bring to a simmer (not a boil, just a gentle roll) and let it all simmer in the pot for 5 minutes, giving an occasional stir. If you haven’t already, take this opportunity to cut your tomatoes into small pieces and shred your pepper jack cheese.

Stir in your pureed corn (the lovely corn-milk-cream mixture). Add the tomatoes and pepper jack cheese, and let it cook for 2 – 3 minutes so the pureed corn can heat up, and the cheese can melt. Serve immediately, and top generously with scallions, avocado and cilantro.

And now, I’d like to give a little toast to the weather, and my awesome people. My husband is off coaching, as is often the case during the fall, and he’s so good at it. It’s raining, so the house is fairly dark, and my tea is hot. My children are still sleeping, so I can actually get this post to you! It’s such a luxury to have kids that love to sleep until 8:30 – 9 (and even later sometimes), when the season permits. This shot below is from a different attempt to get pictures of this poblano-corn chowder soup, and my little 2-year-old really wanted in on the action. Enjoy your weekend!

The Kitchen Beet - Poblano Corn Chowder with Audrey

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