Updated: Aug 24, 2019
‘Tis the season for all things hatch! A proud member of the hatch cult, I’ve been worshipping at the high altar of these tasty New Mexican peppers ever since they recently infiltrated my local grocery store (this happens every August and people seriously go nuts). This satisfying summer soup, ahem “bisque” if you want to be fancy, is one of my favorite ways to highlight these subtly smoky, slightly sweet, and mildly spicy peppers. I buy the chilis already roasted at Central Market and simmer them in a big pot along with sweet summer corn. If you are making this soup out of season, not to worry! Canned hatch peppers are available year round- just substitute in 8 oz of canned chilis if you can't find fresh (make sure to select the heat level you prefer, they range from mild to hot). If you can find fresh hatch peppers but they haven't been roasted, broil them on a foil lined sheet pan for about 12 minutes, turning them with tongs to char evenly. Transfer the blackened, broiled peppers to a paper bag and roll and clamp the top to steam for 10 minutes (this makes the skin easier to peel). Just peel the skin away with your fingers or wipe it off with a paper towel and remove the stems and seeds- you'll be ready to rumble! While not as flavorful, frozen corn can be substituted for the fresh as well. I love to use the cob of the corn to infuse the soup with more flavor, but this step is optional if you aren't using fresh. Bisques are generally laden with cream, but this one tastes rich and silky once puréed minus any of that naughty business thanks to the white beans. Even though it's been absurdly hot in San Antonio, somehow this soup tastes light and hot-weather friendly thanks to all those fresh seasonal ingredients. I love to garnish blended soups with little morsels of what's inside- otherwise, they are sort of a mystery. This yummy bowl of bisque gets topped with charred corn kernels, some minced chili pepper (or minced roasted hatch peppers), cilantro leaves, a drizzle of EVOO, and a dollop of lime crema (sour cream cut with some lime juice). You HATCH to try this delicious recipe!
prep time: 15 min. cook time: 40 min. serves: 4
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 tbsp butter
1/2 yellow onion, diced
1/2 jalapeño, minced
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 tsp mild chili powder
3 ears of corn, kernels cut from the cobs (about 1-1/2 cups, cobs reserved)
4 roasted mild hatch chilis, seeds and stems removed, coarsely chopped
1 can drained and rinsed white beans
4 cups of vegetable or chicken stock
cilantro leaves, charred corn kernels, lime crema (sour cream with lime juice stirred in), minced jalapeño or hatch chili, and/or more olive oil.
Heat the oil and butter in a large pot over medium heat. Add the onion and sauté until beginning to soften, about 3 minutes. Add the jalapeño, garlic, and chili powder and cook 1 minutes more, stirring often. Next, toss in the corn kernels and hatch chilis and season with 1 tsp salt. Cook 2-3 minutes more. Add the white beans, stock, another 1/2 tsp salt, and the reserved corn cobs and give the pot a big stir. Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce and simmer the soup about 30 minutes. Remove the cobs at the end of that time and use an immersion blender to purée the soup (it should still have a little texture). Alternately, transfer the soup to a blender and blend until smooth then return it to the pot. Check for seasoning. Serve the soup hot, ladled into bowls and garnished with desired toppings.