CORN AND ROASTED POBLANO SOUP … something different for your Thanksgiving Menu

Corn and roasted poblanos are one of those sweet and spicy combinations that give Mexican cooking its lovely complexity.    Poblanos’ heat can vary widely according to season, so reduce the quantity if yours are from a hot crop.  They are not meant to overpower the delicate corn.

This recipe is from MESA MEXICANA by Mary Sue Milliken and Susan Feniger.  The recipes have bold flavours from the Border, Coastal Mexico and Beyond.    It would be a  delicious way to begin  to your Thanksgiving Dinner.  The soup freezes well, another plus for the chilly days ahead of us.


2 quarts whole milk

2 tbsp cumin seeds

2 bay leaves

sprig of fresh rosemary or 1/2 tsp dried

1/4 cup olive oil or 4 tbsp unsalted butter

2 large onions diced

2 tsp salt

Freshly ground white pepper to taste

4 go 6 minced garlic cloves

2 tsp ground cumin(if desired)

8 cups fresh or frozen corn kernels

About 1 to 2 generous cups of poblano chiles, roasted, peeled, seed and diced. (This amount depends on how hot your poblanos are)

A bunch of chives or green onions thinly sliced on the diagonal, for garnish.


Combine the milk, cumin seeds, bay leaves and rosemary in a medium saucepan.  Place over low heat and bring nearly to a simmer. (DO NOT BOIL.)  Remove from the heat and let sit 20 minutes to infuse.

Heat the olive oil or butter in a large saucepan or stockpot over medium heat.  Cook the onions with the salt until translucent, about 15 minutes.  Add the garlic and ground cumin(if you like a strong cumin taste) and cook, stirring frequently, 5 minutes.  Then stir in the corn kernels and diced chilies and continue cooking over low heat 5 more minutes.

Using your finest strainer, strain the infused herb milk into the corn and chile mixture.  Bring to a very slow simmer over low heat.  Gently simmer for 15 minutes.  Taste for seasonings adding more salt and freshly ground white pepper if needed.

Pour one-third of the soup in a food processor or blender and puree.  Stir back into the soup pot.  Serve hot with the chives as garnish.

Chef’s notes:

Roast your peppers over a gas flame or on a tray under the broiler. Keep turning so the skin is evenly charred, without burning and drying out the flesh.  Transfer charred peppers to a plastic bag, tie the top closed and let steam until cool to the touch, about 15 minutes.  The best way to peel is just pull off the charred skin by hand and they dip the peppers briefly in water to remove any blackened bits.  Do not peel the pepper under running water since that will wash away flavourful juices.  Once peeled, cut away stems, seeds and veins.


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