Friday, 25 September 2009

Corn & Potato Soup with Cilantro

I came across the idea of cilantro soup earlier this summer and have been quite taken with it. The first cilantro soup I made was clear; a broth thickened a little with tomatoes and onions, and then mixed with plenty of cilantro. Many traditional Mexican recipes that I've seen call for cream or cheese however, and I thought I would try that next. Somehow, I didn't get there; I ended up with this instead. I think I'm feeling a bit like I eat too much cheese and need to tone it down, also I had some lovely bacon in the fridge. With the fat cooked well out of it, I think bacon is actually a lighter and more digestible option than gobs of cheese. Of course, if you prefer, you could leave off the bacon and top the soup with a dollop of sour cream or soft goat cheese instead. The soup itself is very simple, and will adapt to a variety of garnishes.

The other cilantro soup was quite light, a good soup to serve as an appetizer. This soup is much more substantial, and will make a meal by itself.

4 to 8 servings
30 minutes prep time

Corn and Potato Soup with Cilantro
Make the soup:
4 cups chicken stock
1 or 2 bay leaves
4 medium potatoes
4 cobs of corn
salt & pepper
1/2 cup fresh cilantro

Put the chicken stock and bay leaf in a large pot. Wash and cut the potatoes into chunks, and cook them in the broth until tender. Meanwhile, husk the corn and cut the kernals from the cobs. Scrape the cobs. When the potatoes are half done, add the corn and scrapings to the soup. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Remove the bay leaf, and purée the soup with the cilantro until very smooth.

To Finish the Soup:
1 medium onion
6 to 8 slices of bacon

The soup can be made ahead, although it should in that case be re-heated with the vegetables whole and then puréed with the cilantro, to keep the cilantro as fresh and bright as possible.

Peel and chop the onion. Chop the bacon. If the bacon is fatty, it should be cooked first, until quite crisp, then drained and blotted. Drain most of the fat off, and cook the onion slowly until nicely soft and slightly browned in the same pan. Add the bacon back to heat through, then swirl the bacon and onions into the soup. If the bacon is very lean, they can be both cooked together at once.

If you prefer, just sauté the onion in a little oil, and top the soup with sour cream or a slice or two of goat cheese instead of the bacon.

Last year at this time I made Sweet Fruit "Pizza" Made with Basic Sweet Roll Dough. This was the first thing I had made in quite a while, since most of September was taken up with moving last year.


Sophie said...

What a delicious & tasty looking soup!!


Charlene Austin said...

I can't wait to make this! I LOVE potato soup and I LOVE cilantro so this is going to be one of my fav's~~~I know it!