Monday, November 17, 2008

Food for the (less) wise!

My poor wife has endured a weekend without wisdom teeth! Oh the humanity! Like so many of us, she went under the knife and had all four of her little wisdom teeth cut out this past friday. Now, if any of you remember your wisdom tooth experiences, you will recall recovering on a diet of pudding, ice cream, applesauce, mashed potatoes, and soup. Basically, whatever didn't require much of any chewing was on the menu. Now, there' s only so many times you can heat a cup of broth or spoon in some soft serve, so I tried to find a way to help her pass the weekend without suffering lame food.

Fortunately, a friend of mine had mentioned a really cool recipe for corn chowder, and it got me thinking about the creamy, rib-sticking soups that are so good this time of year. So, I decided to put something together.

Here's what I used:

2 pounds loose kernel corn (canned, fresh, or frozen)
2 onions, chopped
6 cloves garlic, crushed and minced
4 cups chicken stock
1/4 cup heavy cream
2 tbsp canola oil
2 tbsp all purpose flour
3 tsp salt
2 tsp chives
1 tsp crushed peppercorns
1 tsp cumin powder
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper

For this, get your stock pot and combine oil and flour together. Heat that up on medium heat and give it a brisk stir to fully combine it. You're making a blonde roux, so keep it stirred as it heats up and it'll soon turn a (duh) blonde color! Once you get that good color, add your chopped onions and salt, and let those cook up after a brisk stir. Keep the lid on to retain the moisture in the onions. Now, if you have some rubbed sage (I didn't) you might want to give it a teaspoon to get that good rustic country flavor. It's fine with just the cumin working for it, but sage is going to taste really good in a lot of these fall foods.

Let the onions cook for about five or so minutes to soften up, and then add in 3/4 of your corn, all of your stock, cream, and cumin. Bring it up to a boil and let it reach a healthy rolling boil before taking the stock pot off the heat. Go ahead and add your garlic and chives at this point. Now, if you have a wand blender, this would be ideal, but even if you just have the regular sort of blender, you can do this. Either way, you want to blend that soup. Spin your blades good and fast so you can zip up the onions and corn and leave little in the way of solid matter. Once that's done, put your soup back onto a medium heat, and add your remaining whole corn kernels. Let it cook for another 10-15 minutes, and you're set.

A little of this soup goes a long way, and this is enough to feed a good six or eight servings. I initially pureed all of the corn, but later on my wife was able to eat a little, so I made a batch with the kernels in it. Needless to say, she hasn't had to suffer through boring food just on account of a little tooth ripping!

Also, I got the 411 from my better half that my father-in-law is now browsing my blog, so I'll give him a shout out. I've heard he's almost as much of a foodie as I am, and I know he makes a mean crepe. Perhaps soon we shall see who's kung fu is stronger!

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