Make Ahead

Saffron and Turmeric Corn Summer Soup

August  5, 2014
2 Ratings
  • Serves 4 to 5
Author Notes

This soup is both light and decadent, both exotic and familiar; it's the perfect balance of sweet and spice. Eaten hot or cold, every bite is a comforting and welcome surprise of flavors. —Tasty Plan

Test Kitchen Notes

This soup will convince all of your senses that summer will never leave. With all of its sugary vegetables, I prepared myself for the possibility of a flat sweetness from this soup. I couldn't have been more wrong. Its smooth texture hid a devilishly deceptive complexity of flavor, as the husks brought an unexpected and pleasant earthiness to the broth. And the sauce (the sauce!) turned each bite more interesting than the last; some spicy, some honeyed, some herbal, some a combo of all of these. After freezing countless ears of sweet summer corn (and now husks) to enjoy this winter, you can rest assured this soup will be making an appearance in my kitchen when the snow is two-feet deep and I long for sand between my toes. —Liz Bucec

What You'll Need
  • For the amazing spicy green sauce:
  • 2 jalapeños, stems and seeds removed
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • 1 handful fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon fresh oregano
  • 1 tablespoon tahini
  • 1/8 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 pinch sea or kosher salt
  • For the turmeric and saffron summer corn soup
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/4 red onion
  • 1-inch knob fresh ginger, sliced
  • 3 to 4 small yellow carrots, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 3 ears fresh corn, shucked, husks reserved
  • 1 yellow summer squash
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric
  • 2 cups either water or vegetable broth
  • 1 pinch saffron, plus more for platting
  • 1 pinch fresh oregano leaves, for platting
  1. For the amazing spicy green sauce:
  2. Place jalapeños, garlic, cilantro, and fresh oregano in a food processor; pulse until roughly chopped.
  3. Add tahini, olive oil, water, and a pinch of salt. Pulse until smooth.
  4. Taste for seasoning, adjusting as necessary. Set aside until ready to use.
  5. Store in an airtight container. Keeps fresh for 4 to 5 days in the refrigerator.
  1. For the turmeric and saffron summer corn soup
  2. Place a large pot over medium-high heat, with 2 tablespoons olive oil. Add red onion, ginger, and carrots. Reduce heat to medium and cook, stirring occasionally for 5 minutes. The onions and carrots should begin to soften, but not brown.
  3. Remove corn kernels from their husks and cobs, then add both kernels and husks into the pot. Add sliced summer squash, then salt, black pepper to taste, and turmeric. Stir.
  4. Add 2 cups water, or vegetable broth, into pot with vegetables. Bring to a simmer, reduce heat to medium low and cook, covered, for 10 minutes.
  5. Discard corn husks. Let soup cool for a few minutes.
  6. Transfer components into a blender, and puree until smooth, about 1 minute in a Vitamix. Transfer back into pot.
  7. Taste for seasoning, adding more salt if necessary. Add a pinch of saffron and stir.
  8. To serve, scoop about a cup of soup into a bowl. Add a couple saffron threads, a couple oregano leaves, a tablespoon or two of the amazing spicy green sauce, and a couple cracks of fresh ground pepper. I also like to eat this with a slice or two of avocado and a scoop of brown rice. (It tastes awesome cold, too!)
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