Crustacean Corn Chowder
Chef Karel Anne Tieszen
4 corn cobs
1 /2 pound shrimp (21-25 size)
4 cups chicken broth
2 serrano chilies, cut in tulip
1 bay leaf
3 Tablespoons butter (divided use)
1 cup onion, chopped
3 /4 cup fennel, chopped
1 /2 cup sweet potato, diced
2 garlic cloves, chopped
(3 cups of corn from cobs)
1 /2 cup cream
Salt to taste
1. Remove corn from the cobs into a bowl, and reserve empty cobs. With six shrimp, remove shell, keeping the tail intact. Set aside. Completely peel all remaining shrimp, reserving shells.
2. In a 2 quart pot, gently heat the chicken stock. Snap empty cobs in half and add to broth, along with the shrimp shells and bay leaf. To create a tulip with the serrano, make two cuts starting about halfway up the chile down to the tip. Drop them into the broth. Allow to simmer while preparing vegetables.
3. In a medium pan, heat 2 Tablespoons of butter and sauté onions until translucent. Add fennel, sweet potato and garlic and sauté for about a minute. Add corn and sauté until it turns bright yellow.
4. Remove the cobs and serranos from the broth. Strain the remaining broth to remove any shrimp shells. Pour 2 cups of broth into the blender and add all sautéed vegetables. Process in the blender until the consistency of chunky applesauce.
5. Add the remaining tablespoon of butter to the saucepan and sauté the shrimp. Reserve the cooked tailed shrimp to a small plate. Cut remaining shrimp into half inch pieces.
6. Pour vegetable puree into pot with remaining chicken stock and stir in shrimp pieces to combine. Add cream and remove from heat. Taste for salt and stir.
7. Ladle into six warm bowls and top with the shrimp tail and fennel fern.