Sweet Corn Bisque with Crab, Cilantro, and Avocado
Elevate summertime corn in this refreshing soup from Dallas chef Janice Provost. Serving it at room temperature—instead of chilled or hot—lets all the flavors shine through.
6 servings (about 6 cups)
6 ears corn, shucked
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 cup white or yellow onion, rough chopped
3 cloves garlic, rough chopped
1 teaspoon cayenne
1 teaspoon turmeric
1 ½ quarts high-quality light vegetable stock
1 cup uncooked long-grain white rice
Salt to taste
1 avocado, diced
2 tablespoons cilantro, minced
Juice of 1 lime
Salt and pepper to taste
1 pound lump crab, picked and cleaned
Optional: cilantro flowers or micro-cilantro
Make the corn bisque: hold the corn by the pointy end with the flat side on a sheet pan and using a large chef knife, carefully cut off the kernels of the corn. Use the back of your knife to scrape off the juices of the corn. Reserve the cobs.
Heat a large stock pot over medium heat. Add the olive oil and sweat the onions and garlic, taking care not to let them brown. Sprinkle the cayenne and turmeric over the onions and stir to incorporate. Add the corn kernels, cobs, and juice along with the rice, bay leaf, and stock to the pot. Simmer for 15 to 20 minutes, or until the rice is completely cooked. Uncover and remove from the heat and allow the soup to cool slightly, about 5 minutes.
Working in batches, place the cooled soup in a blender and purée until smooth. If soup is too thick, add stock in 1/2 cup increments until desired consistency is reached. The soup should be thick enough to lightly coat the back of a spoon. Press the soup through a fine mesh strainer (or chinoise) to remove any larger bits of corn.
Chill soup for at least 2 hours and allow it to sit out at room temperature about 30 minutes before serving.
Make the garnish: peel the tomatoes. Bring a medium pot of water to a boil over high heat. Submerge the tomatoes in the boiling water for 45 to 60 seconds, or until the skins start to visibly loosen. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the tomatoes to an ice bath. When cooled, use a small paring knife to carefully peel away the skins. Dice the tomatoes.
Combine the avocado, tomatoes, and cilantro with the lime juice in a medium-sized bowl and toss gently with a spoon. Add the crab and toss to combine.
To serve: pour the corn bisque into wide-rimmed bowls. Garnish with the crab, tomato, and avocado mixture and the cilantro flowers and micro-greens, if using.