Corn Season Kick Off: Mexican Corn and Poblano Chowder

The start of all seasons is inspiring to chefs, but for me the spring and fall seasons really get me going.  Grilling and porch drinking are in full swing, taking advantage of the moderate temperature before the Florida  temperatures rise and push us indoors.   I especially love when the first crop of corn hits the market, as if it’s the symbol of all good summertime events.   Let the corn cooking begin.   


I saw this recipe in January using frozen corn and marked it for the start of corn season.  I also have recently fallen for Crema Mexican, thinner version of crème fraiche, sour cream.  The flavor is rich and provides an added depth to many dishes, with it slightly sour flavor, and resistance to breaking when heated.  It is now a stock item in our refrigerator.


Recipe has been slightly modified from Martha Stewart


  • 3 scallions
  • 1 large white onion, quartered lengthwise, root end kept intact
  • 2 large fresh poblano chiles (8 ounces)
  • 3 1/3 cup corn kernels, 4 ears, divided
  • 1 tablespoon smoked sea salt
  • 4 cups plus 3 tablespoons water, divided
  • 2 tablespoons fine cornmeal or masa harina
  • Crema Mexican



  1. Cut dark-green tops off scallions, and finely chop. Preheat a large cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat. Place scallions, onion, and chiles in skillet, and cook, undisturbed, until charred on bottom, about 5 minutes. Turn vegetables with tongs, and cook, undisturbed, until charred on other side, about 5 minutes. (Vegetables can also be broiled on a baking sheet.) 
  2. Transfer scallions to a blender. Continue turning and charring chiles and onion until charred on all sides, 5 to 10 minutes more. Remove skillet from heat. Transfer onion to blender.
  3.  Transfer chiles to a bowl, cover immediately with plastic wrap, and let steam 15 minutes. Peel and discard charred skin from chiles, and remove stems and seeds. Halve chiles lengthwise, and slice crosswise into 1/4-inch-thick strips.
  4.  Add 2 1/2 cups corn, the salt, and 2 cups water to blender. Puree until smooth, about 1 minute. Transfer puree to skillet. Stir in remaining corn and 2 cups water. Bring to a boil over high heat, reduce heat, and simmer, stirring occasionally, until thickened slightly, about 8 minutes.
  5.  Whisk together cornmeal and remaining 3 tablespoons water. Stir into soup along with chiles, and simmer until it has the consistency of porridge, about 2 minutes.
  6.  Divide soup among 6 bowls; garnish with chopped scallion greens, and add a scoop of crema mexican. Soup can be refrigerated 2 days; let cool completely before refrigerating. Gently reheat in a covered pot over medium heat, stirring occasionally.


Back yard gardens are growing, farmer markets are getting in new local goods, sun is setting later, charcoal grills are burning, sprinklers are being run thru, cookouts are the new social scene! Cheers to all things spring blossoming!