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A smooth, cool soup

September 08, 2009|By RICK NELSON / Minneapolis Star Tribune

Sweet-corn season is finally here and, unfortunately, it never lasts long.

This always-anticipated late-summer jewel tastes great on its own -- aided, perhaps by a shake of salt and a pat of butter -- but it also shines in soups, salads, side dishes and more.

Consider this possibility:

VELVETY CHILLED CORN SOUP



o Serves 6.

From "The Bon Appetit Cookbook" by Barbara Fairchild (Wiley, $34.95).

6 ears sweet corn, husks and silks removed
6 cups low-sodium chicken broth, divided
3 shallots, chopped
1 onion, chopped
6 tablespoons creme fraiche or sour cream
1/4 cup minced English cucumber
2 tablespoons freshly chopped chives

Using a cleaver or heavy large knife, cut each ear of corn crosswise in half. Place corn in a heavy large pot. Add 5 cups chicken broth, shallots and onion. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer until corn is very tender, about 25 minutes. Using tongs, transfer corn to a large bowl to cool; reserve broth.

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When cool, cut kernels off cobs. Return 4 cups corn kernels to broth. Working in batches, puree soup in blender until very smooth. Strain soup through a fine sieve set over a large bowl, pressing on solids with back of spoon; discard solids. Mix in enough additional chicken broth to thin soup to consistency of heavy cream. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Refrigerate uncovered until cold, about 4 hours (can be prepared up to 1 day in advance; cover and keep refrigerated).

When ready to serve, ladle soup into 6 bowls. Top each with a dollop of creme fraiche (or sour cream). Sprinkle with cucumber and chives and serve.

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