Soup swop parties have taught us that the simple act of making soup and sharing it with others is a great way to build a community,
6 large ears fresh corn or 5 cups frozen corn kernels 2tbs olive oil 1 large onion, finely chopped 1 large yellow bell pepper, stemmed, seeded and cut
into 1cm squares 1 small red bell pepper, stemmed, seeded and cut
into 1cm squares 1 large sweet potato, peeled and cut into 1cm
squares Sea salt Freshly ground black pepper 1tbs flour 4 cups no-salt-added vegetable broth 3/4 cup heavy cream 1tsp crumbled saffron threads 2 scallions (trimmed), white and green parts very
thinly sliced 1tbs minced fresh chives Serves 6 IF YOU’RE using fresh corn, stand each cob on its end inside a large bowl; use a sharp knife to remove the kernels by working the blade straight down against the cob. Use the blunt side of the knife to scrape down the cob; this will help release any milky corn liquid. Stir the liquid and corn together. Reserve the spent cobs.
Warm the oil in a large stockpot over medium-low heat.
Stir in the onion and cook, stirring occasionally, for 8 minutes or until translucent.
Add half the yellow bell pepper and half the red bell pepper, and cook for 3 minutes.
Add the sweet potato, season lightly with salt and pepper, and cook for 5 minutes.
Stir in the flour and cook, stirring well to coat all the vegetables, for 2 minutes.
Increase the heat to high; gently whisk in the broth and bring to a boil.
Add the corncobs (not the corn kernels). Reduce the heat to low, cover and cook for 5 to 8 minutes or until the potato is almost tender.
Combine the cream and saffron in a small saucepan over low heat; once the mixture is warmed through, stir and let it steep (off the heat) for 5 minutes.
Add the saffron cream, corn kernels and corn milk to the stockpot; cook for 5 minutes.
Add salt and pepper as needed. Use tongs to remove the cobs from the pot; holding each one over the pot, use a knife to scrape off any bits of chowder or corn clinging to the cob.
To serve: Ladle the chowder into mugs or bowls; sprinkle with the scallions, chives and the remaining red and yellow bell peppers, then serve.
PICTURES: Deb Lindsey