CORN SOUP, AKA LIQUID CORN ON THE COB

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Creamy corn soup. It tastes like…well, corn. But in the best possible way. It’s like indulging in a liquid corn on the cob, and it will take you to a very happy place. Because you know what’s delicious? Yup, that’s right. CORN. Fresh corn covered in butter and salt. It’s our summer time guilty pleasure. But it’s winter, so why am I torturing you, talking about fresh corn that won’t appear for another 7 months?? Let me tell you another story first.

I’m very lucky to have a few best friends in my life. They’re true blue, couldn’t ask for better, absolute BFFs who have been and will be around for probably the rest of my life. My bestie Seethal (say it with me: SHEE-thul) and I have been together for 23 years. We met in 2nd grade and it was best friend magic ever since. One of our shared loves in life is clothes. Fashion. Style. Cute things. Gold bling and bows and a good sale at J.Crew. For example, Kate Spade occasionally has those super dangerous online sales, the kind where things are marked down 75%-ish and you’re like “HANG ON, I don’t care what’s going on around me because I have to check out this sale please and thank you.” I bought my laptop bag a few months ago on one of these sales, a green and navy rugby striped bag. It’s super cute, super preppy, and I was so psyched. I get home one day and the package is waiting for me on the porch. I rip it open and quickly snap photos to text to Seethal b/c these are her favorite colors. So much so that her wedding scheme for her upcoming nuptials was navy, gold, and emerald. Obviously, she will love this bag. So I texted her pics of my new laptop bag and her response was “You crack me up. I ordered that same one. I hope it’s there when I get home!”

Seethal was married in wine country this past October and the event. Was. Stunning. It was so beautiful. The girl has great taste and her wedding planner did a killer job. Both the wedding and reception was at Meadowood Resort in St. Helena, CA which was probably the most fabulous place George and I will ever travel. (They have a croquet pro on staff—hellooo, fancypants!) (We peaked too early!!!) The reception dinner menu had several courses, one of which was a soup course. Can I get a drum roll for this please?

Roasted corn soup with summer truffles and crispy corn, paired with Miner Viogner wine.

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I wish I had a photo of the actual soup, but George and I were too busy rambling “Oh my God that’s amazing” in between spoonfuls that all I have is the pretty gold place setting that came before it. Sorry, kids. But anyway…

HOLY. MOLY. That was some mother-lovin’ fantastic soup. Honestly, it was just a delicious, creamy, smooth-as-silk corn soup that was like a liquid corn on the cob. I don’t know how else to describe it. So simple, so pure. And it made me so sad that corn was out of season. I had a sudden NEED to figure out how to make this soup. It plagued the back of my mind for days. On the plane back home I was thinking “…how am I going to make that soup? I wonder if I can find a good recipe online. Can I really wait until summer?? Would canned corn work? Gross I can’t believe I just thought about canned corn.” For some dumb reason it took me a day to realize HELLO. THEY SELL FROZEN CORN AT THE GROCERY STORE. AND IT DOESN’T TASTE JANKY. *facepalm* Canned corn tastes like the can. Frozen corn? Totally normal! I can’t believe I even considered the canned stuff.

The weekend after the wedding was a wonderfully weird moment of freedom. It was the first weekend in a year and a half that did not have some wedding something-or-other leading up to it. You know how I mentioned my few best friends? Well, we all got married within one year, almost to the day. First was Morgan in November. Then George and I got married in May. Then came Heather in August. Finally, Seethal in October. When it wasn’t for our own wedding, I was doing something for someone else’s wedding. Which was great! I loved every minute of the weddingpalooza that was our lives, because these girls are my family. But having legit free time back was kind of a cool concept. I decided to crack out a few recipes I’ve been dying to try and that pesky corn soup was the first one on the list. It took priority over everything else.

After doing some research of several recipes, they all seemed pretty simple and similar. That was encouraging. I decided to combine two recipes and make this soup my Saturday afternoon goal. So without further babble, let’s get to it!!

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::: FRESH CORN SOUP :::

Note: I’m using frozen corn in this recipe, but ideally—when in season—fresh corn would be used.

Total Process Time: 1 hr 30 min

• 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
• 1/2 cup coarsely chopped Vidalia or other sweet onion (Note: since that amount is slightly ambiguous, I used 80 g of onion, for your reference)
• 3 small cloves garlic (from 1 pod of colossal/elephant garlic)
• 4 cups corn, freshly cut from the cob – I used 1 bag + a fraction of another bag (Trader Joe’s Super Sweet Cut White Corn, 16 oz wt.) to yield 4 cups. By weight, it is 515 g.
• 1 1/2  tsp kosher salt
• 1/2 tsp black pepper
• 1 – 2 TBSP sugar
• 3 – 3 1/2  cups milk (2%)
• 1 cup half-and-half
• 1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg, plus more for grating on each serving

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1. In a large saucepan over medium-low heat, melt the butter. Gently cook onions in hot butter until tender—do not let them brown. Add 4 cups corn and sprinkle generously with kosher salt. Stir well, then cook until tender and translucent, but don’t the onions or corn brown. Stir in 1 TBSP of the sugar.

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2. In a medium saucepan combine 2 1/2 cups of the milk and the half-and-half. Warm over medium-low heat just until heated through. Pour the corn mixture into the warm milk. Stirring often over medium heat, bring just to simmering. Remove from heat. Cool slightly.

Note: without cool time, the above process took about an hour.

3. Puree soup in batches, one-third at a time, until very smooth. Pour pureed soup through a fine wire strainer set over a bowl, allowing soup to drain through (push through sieve with robber spatula). I strained my soup once, but if you want it extra smooth you can strain it multiple times. Return soup to pan. Reheat over medium heat. For thinner soup, warm the remaining 1/2-1 cup milk over medium heat; gradually stir into soup to reach desired consistency. Taste for seasoning; add salt and the remaining 1 TBSP sugar to your preference.

Makes 4 cups after straining once.

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