You never what kind of weather you’re going to wake-up to these days. Last week we had highs in the mid-40′s to all the way up into the 70′s. Now, how is a gal to plan her weekly soup menu around that?
Clearly, I needed something that could be cautiously optimistic. A bowl filled with lots of color to celebrate the coming of spring, but, while not ready to commit to flip flops and shorts yet, something warm and filling too. Also, I needed a soup to help solve a dilemma, someone else must have done my food shopping this week because I have no idea why I ended up with sweet potatoes, corn, spinach, and tomatoes.
What to do? Back in January, I made Meeru Dhalwala and Vikriam Vij’s Milk Zucchini Soup. It was a delicious bowl; familiar, and yet, completely new thanks to the medley of spices. Inspired by Vij’s soup, I came up with Spring Corn Soup – a colorful bowl of spice-filled brothy soup that was still creamy and filling.
Spring Corn Soup
Serves 4 to 6
2 tsp of cumin seeds
1 garnet yam or sweet potato of your liking, peeled and cut into 1/2 inch dice
1 large (or 2 small) carrots, peeled and cut into 1/2 inch dice
3 cloves of garlic, chopped
1 inch piece of ginger, peeled and finely chopped or grated
1 tbsp of jalapeño pepper, chopped with ribs and seeds removed (keep if you like the extra heat)
1 1/2 tsp garam masala (Vij’s recipe)
1 tsp of salt
1 bag of frozen corn (I used a 10 oz bag, but use whatever you have on hand)
1/2 pound of tomatoes, roughly chopped
5-6 cups of filtered water (depending how broth you like your soup)
2 handfuls of baby spanish, washed
1/2 cup of half and half
In a medium pot, heat a few glugs of olive oil on medium heat for 1 minute. Add the cumin seeds and allow them to sizzle for 30 to 45 seconds. Do not let them burn! Stir in the sweet potatoes and carrots and sauté for about 10 minutes or until browned. Add a little pinch of salt. Keep an eye on the mix as the potatoes can stick and burn easily. Add the garlic and sauté for 1 to 2 minutes. Stir in the ginger, jalapeño pepper, garam masala, salt, and turmeric. Stirring frequently, sauté spices for a few minutes; you may need to a add little more oil if the mix is too dry. Add tomatoes and frozen corn and stir well. Add the water. Cook until all the vegetables are tender (or cooked to the texture you prefer) about 10 to 15 minutes. You’re not looking for a rolling boil, but a gentle bubble. When the vegetables are ready, drop in the handfuls of spinach, stir, then add the half and half and stir again. Do not allow to boil. Turn off heat and stir in cilantro. Taste and adjust the seasoning.
Note: Where are the onions? You’ll notice that I did not use onions in this recipe. That is because I am exploring a low-FODMAP diet (read about it here). As such, onions are a major no-no. If you like onions, add them! I’d go for about 1 large onion chopped. Add to the pot after the cumin seeds have sizzled (for 30 to 45 seconds) and then sauté for about 5 minutes before you add the sweet potatoes and carrots. And yes, I know that garlic is also a FODMAP no-no, but I’m not willing to live without, ever!