When fresh corn is in its peak season and most abundant, save some of those ears for soups and chowders. Corn's distinctive sweetness combines effectively in hot or cold soups and chowders with ingredients like crab meat, zucchini, and, of course, chicken -- as in Pennsylvania Dutch Chicken-Corn Soup. Corn-Zucchini Soup 1 cup corn, scraped from cob 3/4 pound zucchini, diced 1 small onion, quartered 4 sprigs parsley 1 13 3/4-ounce can chicken broth Salt and pepper 1/2 cup sour cream or plain yogurt 1/4 cup finely grated zucchini
Place corn, zucchini, onion, and parsley in a medium saucepan. Add chicken broth. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer 10 minutes. Remove from heat.
Place 1 cup of zucchini mixture into blender container. Cover and blend until pur'eed. Transfer to serving bowl and repeat with remaining zucchini mixture until all mixture is pur'eed. (Pur'ee carefully, as hot mixture can cause blender top to pop off.)
Taste soup and season with salt and pepper. To serve, ladle into soup plates or bowls and top with sour cream. Garnish with grated zucchini. Serves 4. Pennsylvania Dutch Chicken-Corn Soup 1 5-pound roasting chicken 4 1/2 quarts cold water 2 large yellow onions, chopped 2 medium garlic cloves, minced 3 large celery stalks, diced, with tops 2 1/2 cups fresh corn kernels 1/4 teaspoon crushed saffron strands 2 teaspoons liquid hot red pepper sauce 3/4 cup minced fresh parsley 1 teaspoon salt (or to taste) 1 1/2 cups wide egg noodles 2 hard-boiled eggs, coarsely chopped 1/3 cup minced parsley (garnish) 2 hard-boiled eggs, thinly sliced (garnish)
Simmer chicken and giblets in water in large covered kettle for 15 minutes. Remove heart and liver and refrigerate.
Cover pot again. Simmer 1 1/2 hours until chicken is tender. Discard neck. Cool chicken and gizzard. Strain broth. Skim and return to kettle.
Add onions, garlic, and celery. Cover and simmer 35 minutes. Add corn, saffron, and liquid hot red pepper sauce. Cover and simmer 40 minutes.
Meanwhile, cut chicken meat in 1/2-inch cubes. Chop gizzard, heart, and liver. Add to kettle when corn is tender. Add parsley and salt. Cook, uncovered, 20 minutes. Add noodles by the handful. Boil, uncovered, 15 minutes. Add chopped eggs and simmer uncovered 5 minutes.
To serve, ladle into soup bowls. Top with minced parsley and egg slices. Serves 12 to 14. Crabby Corn Chowder 2 1/2 cups fresh grated corn 3 thin slices onion 2 1/2 cups scalded milk 2 1/2 cups thin white sauce 2 egg yolks, beaten Salt and pepper Pinch of nutmeg 1 cup flaked crab meat, fresh or canned
Combine corn, onion, and scalded milk and cook over boiling water 20 to 25 minutes. Take out onion slices, then force liquid and corn through a coarse sieve. Add to white sauce and bring the whole to boiling point. Stir in egg yolks, one at a time, beating after each addition. Season to taste with salt, pepper, and a grating of nutmeg.
Just before serving, stir in flaked crab meat. Serve with salted crackers, buttered toast, or croutons.