BaltimOregon to Maine

Locavore Cooking with Southern Efficiency and Northern Charm

Oaxacan Chileatole De Elote (Chileatole Of Fresh Corn)

with 3 comments

Diana Kennedy's Oaxacan soup, with sweet corn from Luke Beene's organic Southtown Corvallis urban farm.

For some reason, I thought the local sweet corn season was over. Or that it never really happened, with all the poor weather we’ve had this year. So I was happy to find delicate fresh ears of corn at Luke Beene’s stand at the farmers’ market today. I arrived at closing time (as usual), rushing around in a panic to buy this sweet end-of-season produce (corn and raspberries) before it’s too late.

Had a corn revelation today. Cut the cob into chunks and only then slice off the kernels. That way they don't spray everywhere. Your knife stays closer to the cutting board.

Finding the corn meant I could make Diana Kennedy’s Chileatole De Elote (Chileatole Of Fresh Corn) soup. I knew Mexicans made soups with floating chunks of corn still on the cob, but I’ve hardly tried them. This recipe is from Kennedy’s beautiful-sounding new love letter to Oaxaca cuisine. The recent NPR piece set in her lush vegetable garden and kitchen cast a spell on me. There’s just something about Oaxaca. Of course, it’s the only place in Mexico we’ve been, but we’re not alone in believing the cuisine, with its moles, is among the best in Mexico. That’s where we did the Seasons of My Heart cooking school. And we continue to enjoy Oaxaquena comida here in Corvallis, as a majority of our Mexican immigrant population hails from that state.

Written by baltimoregon

October 7, 2010 at 1:03 am

3 Responses

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  1. I should note I had to improvise with Diana Kennedy’s recipe. I certainly didn’t have chiles tabaqueros or red costeno, or even dried serranos on hand. So I used a combination of ancho chiles and two fresh serranos. I’m sure that would make Kennedy gasp. You can see my soup came out much darker and smokier and less creamy than the one pictured with Kennedy’s recipe. And I didn’t have fresh epazote, so I just used the dried stuff, available at any Mexican tienda.


    October 7, 2010 at 10:10 am

  2. And don’t throw away those cobs! Put them a pot, cover with water and simmer for 20 minutes and you’ve got yourself some fabulous corn stock for using in this soup, or for a corn risotto.


    October 7, 2010 at 12:52 pm

  3. Oh, corn risotto! Lovely. Yeah, the soup involves making corn stock as the first step. But you’re still leftover with about 2 cups of it you can save for other uses. Any particular corn stock recipes you recommend?


    October 7, 2010 at 2:28 pm

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