Cooking what I love and sharing it with others,--it's mostly how I live and definitely a big part of why I started this blog. It's also the idea behind Cook What You Love by Bob and Melinda Blanchard, one of my most treasured cookbooks and the subject of today's Famous Fridays post. Bob and Melinda are kind of my heroes--years ago they left the grind of the corporate world and the snowy winters of Vermont to move to the paradise of Anguilla and open up a seaside restaurant to live and cook the life they love! The book is full of interesting and delicious down-to-earth, totally home-cook friendly recipes, gorgeous photos and great little anecdotes about their island life and their adventures. This Mexican Corn Soup is a perfect example of the kinds of dishes the book features--it's a little bit off the beaten path, utterly yummy and can be made and served in under an hour. Now you too can cook (and eat) what you love!
This book is not new--it's been around for over a decade and I only came to it a few years ago when I picked it up in a used bookstore and was immediately intrigued by the title. Can't believe it's taken me so long to feature it as one of my Famous Friday posts. I've already shared a few of the recipes here like the cake part of these terrific Pumpkin Whoopie Pies, this Grilled Steak with Coconut Lime Sauce and this Crusty Cornmeal Chicken with Boursin Sauce--all of which are easy to make and just a little bit out of the ordinary, like this immensely comforting, flavorful and satisfying soup!
Every bite is filled with the goodness of corn, tender chicken, tomatoes, Monterey Jack cheese and the irresistible crunch of tortilla chips, rounded out by the little zing of garlic and chiles. It's such a favorite of mine, that I even long for the cold weather (shocking if you know my general aversion to frigid temps) just to have an excuse to make this wonderful soup!
And the best part is that this is so easy to throw together and versatile--want to make it vegetarian--sub in vegetable broth and leave out the chicken. Want to use cheddar instead of the jack cheese? Totally delish that way too--you really can't go wrong. The only bad thing you can do is to not make this soup!! So, if you find yourself with an extra hour this weekend (and with the turning back of the clock, there's really no excuse) cook up a batch of Mexican Corn Soup for someone you love!! And if you're looking to add this cookbook to your collection, I think it's out of print now, but you can definitely buy a used copy on Amazon for about $4.00--an amazing bargain!! Have a great weekend everyone and I'll be back next week hopefully with more yummy dishes that you will "love to cook" as much as I do!!
Cook What You Love's Mexican Corn Soup-Famous Fridays
Serves 4 as a main course
Prep Time: 15 minutes; Cook Time: 20-25 minutes
Just a little heads up--you will need a food processor or blender to make this.
- 2 (10 ounce) packages frozen corn, thawed (it's fine to estimate this, I could only find 16 ounce bags so I used 1 and about 1/4 of another bag)
- 1 cup low-sodium chicken broth
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 2 cups milk (I used 1%--use a higher fat content if you want it to be creamier)
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- 4 ounce can diced green chiles
- 1 pound boneless chicken breasts, cooked and cut into cubes (it's fine to use leftover chicken for this or just boil some chicken in water or broth)
- 16 cherry tomatoes (I used heirloom so I had some yellow and red to work with) cut in half or quarters if very large
- 8 ounces Monterey Jack cheese, cut into small cubes
- Tortilla chips for garnish
1. Puree the corn with the chicken broth in a food processor or blender until smooth. Place the butter into a large pot and melt over high heat. Add the corn mixture and cover the pot. Bring to a boil, stirring often. Then lower the heat and let it simmer for about 5 minutes, stirring often.
2. Add the milk, garlic, salt, pepper and chiles. Bring to a boil and simmer over low heat for 2 minutes. Add in the cooked chicken and the tomatoes and heat for a few minutes until all is heated through. Remove the pot from the heat and stir in the cheese. Ladle the soup into bowls and top with slightly crushed tortilla chips. Serve immediately.
3. The soup can be stored in an airtight container for 3-4 days in the refrigerator and reheats very well.
Note: Recipe adapted from Cook What You Love by Bob and Melinda Blanchard. I omitted the 2 teaspoons of fresh oregano and the fresh cilantro to use as a garnish.