Tim was a great friend of mine when I lived in Sydney and we spent a lot of time together. Since I moved away, he has lived in Europe with only the rare visit back to Australia. Always a wanderer, Tim is also a great cook, a yogi and an ayurvedic master in the kitchen.
A wonderful light, healthy soup made from sweetcorn emerged from one of Tim’s Ayurvedic cooking class. It is exceptional. It is so simple and cheap, but beautiful. Wonderful. Amazing.
Tim always warned that the coconut milk might split, and to be honest, I had it split on me once, many years ago. But, if you consider Thai cuisine, coconut milk can be boiled easily without splitting, and I have never had a problem with other recipes using coconut milk. So I believe it is more to do with the quality of the coconut milk – as this soup depends on the coconut milk for its intrinsic qualities, get the best that you can. I have also included a step in the recipe that will totally minimise any chance of splitting, if it is at all prone to it.
Most Heavenly Coconut Sweet Corn Soup with Chilli and Cumin
2 cobs sweetcorn
2 Tblspn ghee
2 Tblspn ginger, freshly grated
0.5 tspn cumin seeds
1 Tblspn sweet chilli sauce or a sweet chilli paste (use less)
3 – 4 spring onions, sliced on the diagonal
1 tin (400 – 450ml) coconut milk
Remove the kernels from the sweetcorn cobs using a sharp knife. Save half a cup of kernels and add the rest with 0.5 cup water to a food processor or blender. Blend to a pulp.
Strain the pulp, discarding the kernels and keeping the liquid.
Heat the ghee gently. Add the ginger and cumin seeds and fry until lightly toasted. Add the corn juice and the saved corn kernels. Simmer very gently (just on the boil) for 20 minutes – watch it so that it does not catch on the bottom of the pan, and add addition water if necessary.
Place about 150 ml of coconut milk in a bowl and pour about half a cup of the sweet corn mixture into the milk and stir well. Add a little more soup, and mix well again. Then pour this back into the soup, stirring while it is added and to mix it well with the soup.
Now add the rest of the coconut milk and gently reheat to a simmer. Stir through the chilli paste or chilli sauce and a pinch or two of salt. Serve and garnish with spring onions.
recipe notes and alternatives
The sweet chilli sauce gives the soup a little sweetness. I usually add half a Tblspn of sweet chilli sauce and half a Tblspn of chilli paste, jam or sauce. Always adjust the amount for your heat tolerance levels.
This recipe is one of the vegetarian recipes from our first blog which was in existence from 1995 – 2006. It is cross posted on our sister site, A Life (Time) of Cooking. It appears here as part of the Retro Recipes series of recipes which documents our vegetarian recipes from that first blog.