Silver Queen Corn Bisque
Wyndham Hill Inn, East Burke, VT
Cameron Howard prefers using Silver Queen corn, which is native to Vermont, because it is extra sweet. She suggests substituting regular white corn if her favorite variety is not available.
- 5 to 6 ears Silver Queen or white corn
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 cup diced Spanish onion
- 4 cups water
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 sprig fresh thyme
- 3 peppercorns, crushed
- 2 parsley stems
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 1 cup half-and-half
- 3/4 cup dry white wine
- 2 1/2 tablespoons salt
- 1 cup popped popcorn
With a sharp knife, remove the corn kernels from the cobs and set them aside.
Over medium heat, in a large stockpot, sweat the cobs in 1 tablespoon of the butter with 1/2 cup of the onion. Break the cobs in half if they are too large to fit into the pot. Cook until the onions are soft and translucent, and the aroma of sweet corn is apparent. Add the water, bay leaf, thyme, peppercorns, and parsley stems. Simmer the soup for 45 minutes, lid askew, but do not boil. Strain and reserve the liquid, discarding all of the solids.
Heat another medium-size soup pot over medium-high heat, and sauté the remaining onions and corn with the rest of the butter until tender. Add the cob stock and simmer for 15 minutes. Add the heavy cream and half-and-half, and simmer until creamy and slightly thickened. Remove from heat and cool in refrigerator for 15 minutes. Remove from the refrigerator and purée in a blender until the soup is smooth. Add salt to taste, reheat, and serve. Garnish the bowls of soup with popcorn.