Genevieve’s chicken and creamed corn soup
Being Samoan Chinese and living in Samoa eating chicken cream corn soup is a given for our family. Always eaten during Sunday tonai (lunch feast) as an appetizer along with Oka (see my post here) it is one of the many Chinese dishes I was taught to cook before heading off to university. It is definitely one of those soups that once you have prepared all its components cooking it is a breeze. I decided to put a twist on the original recipe my father taught me by making my own creamed corn using fresh seasonal corn and throwing the bare corn cobs into the chicken stock to give it an extra corn kick but keeping to my father’s method. Although I have pulled out all the stops making everything from scratch for this soup I have also suggested a few shortcuts below in case you are in a hurry.
Serves 8 as a main
6 ears corn, shucked
1 cup water
2 tablespoons butter
1 cup pouring cream
1 teaspoon all-purpose flour
Crispy chicken skin**
Makes enough for 8 – 10 servings
8 – 10 chicken drumsticks
Pinch flaked sea salt
Chicken corn stock**
2 kg chicken carcass
6 bare corn cobs
3 L water or enough to cover chicken
½ bulb garlic, crushed
5 cm piece of ginger
4 stalks of celery
2 onions, quartered
1 batch of chicken corn stock
750g chicken mince or very thinly diced chicken meat.
2 tbsp cornflour
3 tbsp water
1 batch of creamed corn
4 egg whites, whisked
Salt & pepper
3 Spring onions, finely sliced
Cut corn from cobs (reserve cobs) and put in a large saucepan with water, butter, 1/2 tsp salt and ¼ tsp pepper. Simmer over medium heat, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until tender, 5 – 10 minutes
In another saucepan whisk in flour and cream. Boil over medium heat, whisking constantly, 1 minute. Carefully transfer cream mixture and 2 cups corn with some of cooking liquid to a blender and puree (use caution when blending hot liquids). Stir puree into corn and simmer for 5 minutes. Taste and season if required.
Note: Creamed corn can be made 1 day ahead and chilled (covered once cool) or frozen. Defrost first before using in soup.
Crispy chicken skin
Pre heat oven to Bake at 180°C
Remove the skin from the drumstick and cut one side of the skin so that they can lay flat.
Pat them dry and stretch them out flat onto a baking tray with baking paper. Sprinkle sea salt on them.
Place some baking paper over the tray and then place another same sized tray over them to flatten them.
Place in the pre heated oven. Bake for 20 minutes or until crispy and golden.
Allow to cool on a rack until ready for use.
Note: The rest of the drumstick can be added to the stock below.
Clean the carcass of excess fat and marrow; this will make your job easier later when you are skimming the stock.
Add the chicken, corn cobs, water and rest of ingredients to the pot and slowly bring the pot to the boil. This is where you will have to do most of the skimming, as most of the scum and fat will surface as the stock comes up to temperature. Continue to skim the stock every now and again during the simmering process.
Once the stock begins to boil, reduce back to a simmer. Simmer for three hours then drain the liquid with a sieve.
Note: the stock can be made a day ahead and chilled (covered once cool) or stored in the freezer till needed.
Place the chicken stock in a pot and slowly bring it to a boil and then reduce the heat to a simmer.
Add in the chicken and stir it through the stock to distribute and cook evenly for 2 minutes
Place the cornflour into a small bowl and gradually stir in the water until smooth and combined. Gradually stir the cornflour mixture into the stock mixture. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 2 minutes or until soup thickens slightly.
Stir in the creamed corn.
Slowly pour beaten eggs into the soup in a steady stream, stirring constantly until all the egg whites are cooked. You want to avoid the egg whites clumping together.
Season soup with salt and pepper.
Allow soup to simmer for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally until it thickens.
Serve topped with sliced spring onions, a dash of sesame oil and a piece of crispy chicken skin.
*If fresh corn is not in season or you can’t be bothered making your own creamed corn then a can of creamed corn can be substituted instead but making sure that the tin you are using is creamed corn and not corn kernels as you need that extra creaminess for the soup.
**For the chicken stock like above the bare corn cobs can be thrown in if you have them or not. While making this soup although I used chicken drumsticks for the chicken skin, a whole chicken can be used by deboning the breast and using it in the soup, the carcass to use in the stock and the skin on the breast for the crispy chicken skin.
*** After straining the stock you can always use any chicken meat you can salvage from the chicken carcass and drum stick and add to the soup.