Sunday, September 13, 2009

Your Sunday Recipe

Instead of a poem, time to make soup while some wonderful summer produce is available. This recipe is from the L.A. Times “Culinary SOS" column and originally came from The Organic Panificio Café in Marina del Rey. In Los Osos, the only place I could get parsnips was at Vons.

Sweet corn and parsnip soup

2 ½ tb butter (or use butter and olive oil)
1 c diced onion
1 stalk celery, diced
5 cloves garlic, smashed
3 springs parsley, plus chopped parsley for garnish, divided
4 sprgs thyme
1-2 bay leaf (discard before blending)
3 c. (1 lb) fresh, sweet yellow corn kernels (from 5-6 ears)
1/3 pound peeled, trimmed and diced parsnips
2 ½ tsp salt
½ tsp white pepper (season to your taste. I tossed in sage, poultry seasoning and curry powder, whatever else caught my fancy on the spice shelf.)
6-7 c milk (I use low fat milk since the soup is so rich and creamy from the corn, I think fat milk would be a bit much)

I use a large wok-type pan for the start, put in all the diced stuff (minus the corn) and saute on medium heat for about 20 minutes, stirring. (to make sure the parsnips are soft) Add corn and sauté for another 15, stirring frequently. Then I dump it all into a large soup pot, fish out the bay leaves, add the milk, and simmer for about 30 minutes. Cool a bit then puree with an emersion blender. (Or scoop out in batches and use a regular blender) Adjust seasoning to taste and add more milk if needed.

If you want to get really chi-chi, could run it all through a food mill to really remove any bits of fiber. Or you if your dice is small enough, could remove ½ the veggies, puree the rest, return the dice and turn it into a chunky chowder. Either way, it’s rich and yummy, especially if you can get your hands on sweet fresh corn. Enjoy.)


Shark Inlet said...

Thanks for the recipe, Ann ... sounds like a winner for my family.

And ... where is the poem? Keillor had a Ted Kooser poem on the writer's almanac this last week and I was looking forward to your poem.

My favorite poem (in the last week or two):

Haikus are easy
But sometimes they don't make sense

Alon Perlman said...

Good choice for changing the season, though Marina Del Ray has little seasonal variation.

Parsnips, the neglected vegetable.
And a two texture version, perfect recipe yet.
In similar recipes when pureeing I reserve more of the tender parts; for example the Tips of the corn if very fresh, course chop some inner celery leaves, transparent sliver some onion. And with parsnips; roast a few slivers (Thin fries style foil in toaster oven, trace of butter or other oil to brown) Can be mixed in, to partly cook after the pan is removed from the range, or just during reheating, or sprinkled on top of a single serving.
With very tender corn this creates little bursts of sweetness.

Two minutes warning to end the first game
San Francisco leading
Incomplete pass.

Churadogs said...

Alon, hmmm, good suggestion, bet roasting the parsnips would increase their parsnippy flavor. As for puree or chowder, matter of taste. Some people don't like textured soup, some do. With this recipe, can fool around with it and try different ways. Including adding chicken, turkey, fish, etc, if wished.

And you're right. Parnips are a forgotten vegetable.Ralph's stopped carrying them because they didn't sell so they went bad, being a rather fragile root vegetable, I guess. But, weirdly, Vons had piles of 'em at the ready, so I guess Von's shoppers must be parsnip savvy?

Shark, sorry to disappoint. Gotta keep flexible otherwise we turn into dullards. Poem. Recipe, Photo, who knows. That way Sunday becomes a surprise.

Bev. De Witt-Moylan said...

I have had this soup in both its natural and strained states. Though it is supremely thick with apparent decadent richness - despite the low-fat milk - it is easy enough to push carefully in small amounts through a kitchen sieve, the kind you might use for draining the liquid from olives. NOT a colander.

My preference is the strained version. The elegantly subtle flavor and texture are worth the sacrifice of a small amount of fiber. You can always get fiber.

In the corn vein,Michelle Ward-Howe from Seasonal Custom Cuisine Delivered - - gave me this excellent and timely recipe last year from a sustainable foods workshop she catered.


To make the salad:
Cook 4-6 corn till just crisp tender and then cool in ice water. Cut from the cob. Add cherry tomatoes and about 1/4 diced red onion. Make a balsamic vinaigrette; about 5 TBSP olive oil and 3 TBSP balsamic vinegar, fresh tarragon, salt, pepper to taste, a little squirt of honey if you like.
Sometimes I do it with cider vinegar, olive oil and basil instead. That's really good, too."

Bev. De Witt-Moylan said...

The web site for Seasonal Custom Cuisine Delivered is actually case you were looking...

Churadogs said...

Ooo, corn salad sounds yummy, too. Thanks.

Mike Green said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Mike Green said...

Big pot o water boil the celery chopped corse along with halved onions and broken carrots, salt a little, until it,s detectible. reduce to two quarts or so and remove veggies, set to cool.
Cook two or more crabs in boiling water, that's right, make em walk the plank, they deserve to die, ugly buggers. use crab boil spices and set aside to cool after cooking (about ten min.), save a cup of that disgusting crab water too, Then (what fun) clean the meat out into a bowl, keep all the smaller shells (hardcores break the big ones up)
Get a bottle of Courvasier , Drink all but two ounces cause that's what you need.
In a large pan melt down about a stick of unsweetened butter and add a little EVOL. Throw five medium fine chopped shallots and a few crushed garlic cloves cook until smelly then toss in the crab shells and some tomato paste, fry this mess up while stirring until the shells start to blacken, then hit with the booze, WATCH OUT!! This is flammable! You can flambe if you want, but there is no advantage, I just reduce until the whole mess is almost dry.
Mix in your stock and half the crab water. (increase if it's not crabby enough)
Boil and sit back and take bribes from the folks that can smell this, after all, there is only so much.
When this gets about one third reduced, pour through cheesecloth strainer into another (Fancy) pan. Put in some spices at this time And about one half volume in heavy cream. Maybe a few veggies (carrots,celery,parsnips)blanched add the crab meat, heat till bubbly

Mike Green said...

Oh; I forgot:
Sprinkle with fresh corn kernals.

Churadogs said...

Woa, with a soup/chowder that delicious you need to offer thanks and prayers to the wonderful crabs you're forcing to walk the plank instead of calling them ugly buggers. They may be ugly, the they're DELICIOUS ugly buggers, so, thanks are in order, methinks.