Late Summer is always a beautiful time.
Summer produce is still here, with tomatoes peaking in flavors, the last fresh corn husks displayed on stalls, and summer squashes still sweet trailing off while Fall squashes begin to appear. The days are starting to shorten giving the signal of cooler days to come, while the summer heat still lingers. During Labor Day week-end, I finally gave the last summer squashes full honor in the kitchen, bringing home beautiful yellow and green ones.
Having found some fresh white and yellow corn too, I decided to combine them into a soup that would be a perfect match for this late Summer to Fall transition. The soup is vegan and requires very few ingredients but is incredibly aromatic. This is thanks to a little cilantro and one key spice: cardamon. Only a touch makes all the difference.
I also took the opportunity of having green squashes to make a zucchini cake, always a fave. This time I used a recipe from Amanda Paa's recipe: Smitten With Squash. This cake had a beautiful texture and flavors. I omitted the frosting, meaning it could also be eaten for breakfast :). If you are looking for your next sweet thing to bake, then this cake comes highly recommended! And now back to the soup: the recipe is below!
2 large zephyr squashes, cut into 1 inch half-moons
1 fresh corn husk
1/2 small onion, chopped
1 clove garlic
1/3 c coconut milk (or more to taste)
1 tbsp cilantro leaves
2 cardamom pods
salt, pepper to taste
1. Sautee the onion into a little olive oil. When translucent, add the garlic clove, smashed, and cook for another 30 seconds.
2. Add the squash half-moons and corn, and cook for a few more minutes.
3. Add water to the pan until the vegetables are barely covered. Season with salt and pepper, add the cilantro, and let simmer until the vegetables are cooked, about 20’.
4. Remove about 1 cup of the cooking liquid. Then, using an immersion blender or a Vitamix (or other brand), puree the soup, and add the cardamom seeds and the coconut milk.
5. Adjust the seasoning if need be. Serve into bowls and drizzle a little coconut milk and/or sprinkle a few cilantro leaves if desired.
6. Enjoy! :)