One of the best things about summer is that it’s full of produce so good, it’s almost a shame to cook it. Every time I buy berries or fruit I wince at the thought of transforming them into something other than their natural state. Sure, I love pies and crumbles and jams as much as the next fruit junkie, but in this season, fresh and raw are sometimes best. Of course, it doesn’t stop me from baking and cooking fruit, I just always have second thoughts about it. And yes, pies and crumbles just don’t taste the same when the fruit is not in season or is frozen. I did however, manage to pull together a fresh corn soup that keeps the freshness of corn intact, while allowing you to do something different with it.
This soup is many things: fresh, raw, refreshing in the muggy heat of summer, vegetarian and vegan friendly, and best of all – a cinch to make in the kitchen. You could make this late at night after getting home from a grueling day at work and it will take you no more than 15 minutes! In the time it might take you to order a pizza, you could make this soup. Without even approaching your stove and making your already-hot apartment or house even hotter. Are you intrigued?
Other than the slight messiness of cutting the kernels off the cob, this is fun and easy. Yes, you need a blender or a food processor for this, perhaps the soup’s only drawback. But all in all, this is a pretty energy-efficient soup if you think about it. With all the talk as of late of reducing your carbon footprint and with energy costs sky-high, you help the environment by not using the stove and thereby leave a few extra dollars in your pocket to treat yourself to a summer margarita – which, if the soup fails to take the edge off after the long day at work, the margarita surely will.
Chilled Corn and Cucumber Soup
3 ears of corn on the cob
1 cup vegetable stock
juice of 1 lime
1/3 cup chopped cilantro
1/2 jalapeno pepper with seeds and pulp
1 tsp salt
But the corn off the cob – this may be messy and your kitchen might be covered with a few kernels here and there. You can clean it up later, but just be forewarned. Puree the corn in a food processor adding half a cup of vegetable stock to facilitate the process.
Peel and cut the cucumber in 1 inch pieces. Add the cucumber to the corn mixture and continue to pulse until pureed. Add the remaining stock to help emulsify.
Continue to pulse through and add the lime juice, the jalapeno pepper, and cilantro until well blended.
Season with salt and chill before serving. The soup actually tastes better the next day after the flavors had a chance to develop and blend together better, but it’s also exceptionally good as soon as it’s made.