There are brown boxes everywhere, some packed, some partially packed and several others resting next to it, soon to be used. It's not a pretty scene out here. It is a mess. For someone who likes things kept in place, neatly arranged and clean (I don’t have OCD, I promise), it’s painful to watch the chaos. In less than a week, we shift to another apartment. It is something I am looking forward to for several reasons. It’s not too far from where we currently live but we still need to haul a moving truck, which means there is a lot of sorting and stuffing happening these days.
So, before I reach a stage when blogging becomes my least priority, let me quickly share this summer soup with you. It’s our absolutely favorite and I’m sure you will love it too.
I didn’t grow up sipping soup for supper. It’s not common in India although I believe the trend is now changing a bit. At times, my mom asks me for ideas to prepare soup. Dad still doesn’t like it but mom enjoys it, especially when she is not in her best health. The past few years that I am here in US, I got used to soup so much that it’s become our frequent weekly dinner. We both love it, be it creamy or thin, loaded or light.
Corn soup happens every summer, regardless of how warm the days get. Occasionally, I make it light with lots of vegetables and other times, creamy chowder. You might get lazy and think of using frozen corn but don’t! Corn chowder tastes best only and only with fresh summer corn. Truth. And if you are a seafood lover, throw in some jumbo shrimp. Either chop it to teeny sizes or leave it whole for the extra bite.
A very special ingredient that went in the corn chowder this time is Korean Chili Flakes from Season with Spice. Unusual, I agree but it worked. I loved the rich color of flakes and it smells just divine. It’s not too spicy but just a teaspoon and it turned the chowder to a beautiful shade of orange. I eat with my eyes first and a good-looking soup with a vibrant color always makes me hungrier for more!
Spicy Shrimp Corn Chowder
- 2 ears of corn (kernels removed)
- 8 jumbo shrimps (skin and tail removed)
- 1 leek (finely chopped)
- 1 bunch green onions (finely chopped)
- 1 medium potato (cut in cubes)
- 2 cloves garlic (finely chopped)
- 1 cup milk
- 1 cup water
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1 teaspoon cumin powder
- 1 teaspoon fennel powder
- 1-¼ teaspoon korean chili powder
- In a deep pan, melt butter along with 1 tablespoon oil in medium heat. Add garlic along with chopped leek. Add a pinch of salt and give it a stir. Allow it cook at medium heat for about 3 minutes or until the chopped leek is softened.
- In the same pan, add corn, potatoes and half of the chopped green onion. Season with salt, add all the spices (cumin, fennel and 1 teaspoon korean chili powder), give it a stir and allow it to cook for about a minute. Now, add water and milk, bring the heat to medium low and allow the potatoes to soften.
- In the mean time, rub some oil, salt and ¼ teaspoon of korean chili powder to the jumbo shrimp and pan fry it for about 3 minutes on each side or until the shrimp curls up. Keep it aside to be used later.
- Check the pan and if the potatoes are softened enough, ladle half of the soup in a blender and blend it to smooth consistency. Return it to the saucepan and give it a stir. (This would thicken the chowder. Alternatively, you can blend the whole soup to creamy). Check for salt and add any, if required.
- Ladle soup in serving bowl, top it with the pan-fried shrimp and garnish with the remaining green onions.
Now, I have to get back to packing. Wish me luck so I don’t break anything in the process.