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Chocolate Cherry Ganache – Macaron Filling

Rain in the Kirsch with these dark chocolate and cherry macarons!

Sweetcorn and Red Pepper Soup

This sweetcorn and red pepper soup is so corny – and best with the freshest of corn. Add a savoury macaron and it’s taken to another level!

The freshest corn on the cob has been rare this year outside Paris. Call me a food snob but there was no way I was going for prepackaged corn, wilting under cellophane in the supermarket. So when I saw a magnificent pile of fresh corn at our local farmers’ market last week, I pounced on them like there was no tomorrow. Autumn may officially be upon us but I’m still hanging on by a corn thread to the last best fruits and vegetables of French summer.

Sweetcorn and red pepper cream soup recipe

I first tasted the most creamy sweetcorn soup on our last visit to South Africa in the French colonial wine town of Franschhoek, near Cape Town. Antoine and I had splashed out to celebrate our wedding anniversary at Grande Provence, where the chef had bowled us over with his soup (quick pause here for a pun groan). It was simply but elegantly poured at the table from a white porcelain milk jug into an oversized rimmed porcelain bowl, serving as a moat around a heap of turnip purée and crowned with a gigantic tempura prawn, along with a few other fancy green garnishes.

I was in awe. Antoine knows that these kind of special eating-out moments are always a good investment, as I’ll probably try to copy the experience at home.  Well, in this case, without the fancy frills part. Over the last couple of years, this creamy, velvety velouté soup has turned into a much simpler but delicious starter for dinner guests.  To cut the sweetness, I added red pepper and a hint of smoked paprika. Smaller helpings of this is better, as it is pretty rich. If you can’t find fresh corn on the cob (which really is best), then use frozen kernels and 3/4 litre vegetable stock.

sweetcorn red pepper soup

Sweetcorn and Red Pepper Soup Recipe

Serves 6

Preparation Time: 15 minutes
Cooking Time: 25 minutes

3 fresh corns on the cob
20g butter
1 red pepper, finely chopped
1 onion, finely chopped
salt and pepper
1 tsp smoked paprika
2 sprigs flat parsley leaves
100g single cream

sweetcorn red pepper soup - method

1. Rip off the outer leaves and threads and snap off the bases with a twist of the wrist. Cut the kernels from the cobs and throw them into a large heavy-based pan, including the bare cobs (this will help make your natural stock).  Pour over just enough water to cover the lot (about 1.25 litres) and bring to the boil then boil for another 5 minutes.

2. Melt the butter in a large saucepan and soften the onion and pepper gently over low to medium heat for about 10 minutes until translucent then add the smoked paprika.  Meanwhile, using a strainer, remove and discard the cobs. Strain off the corn and add to the onion and peppers. Continue to gently soften for another 5 minutes and continue to reduce the corn stock during this time.

3. Add the sweetcorn stock and cream to the vegetables and simmer for another 5 minutes.  Add the parsley and season to taste then liquidise either in a blender or using a stick blender.  If the soup is too thick, I add a dash of semi-skimmed milk.

Sweetcorn and Red Pepper Soup
Prep Time
15 mins
Cook Time
25 mins
Total Time
40 mins
 

A wonderful summery soup made with the freshest of corn and with an added spicy kick of red pepper and smoked paprika.

Course: Appetizer, Starter
Cuisine: British, French, South African
Keyword: corn chowder, sweetcorn pepper soup, sweetcorn recipes
Servings: 6 people
Author: Jill Colonna
Ingredients
  • 3 fresh corns on the cob
  • 20 g butter
  • 1 red pepper finely chopped
  • 1 onion finely chopped
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 2 sprigs flat parsley leaves
  • 100 g single cream
Instructions
  1. Rip off the outer leaves and threads and snap off the bases with a twist of the wrist. Cut the kernels from the cobs and throw them into a large heavy-based pan, including the bare cobs (this will help make your natural stock). Pour over just enough water to cover the lot (about 1.25 litres) and bring to the boil then boil for another 5 minutes.
  2. Melt the butter in a large saucepan and soften the onion and pepper gently over low to medium heat for about 10 minutes until translucent then add the smoked paprika. Meanwhile, using a strainer, remove and discard the cobs. Strain off the corn and add to the onion and peppers. Continue to gently soften for another 5 minutes and continue to reduce the corn stock during this time.
  3. Add the sweetcorn stock and cream to the vegetables and simmer for another 5 minutes. Add the parsley and season to taste then liquidise either in a blender or using a stick blender. If the soup is too thick, I add a dash of semi-skimmed milk.
Recipe Notes

Serve with fresh bread and salted butter or why not a savoury macaron if you prefer gluten-free? (Recipes in my book, Mad About Macarons)

 

Jill Colonna

MadAboutMacarons.com

 

Serve with fresh bread and salted butter or why not a savoury macaron if you prefer gluten-free?
(Savoury macaron recipes are in my first book, Mad About Macarons!).
Totally toe-curling with a glass of chilled Chenin Blanc wine.

Sweetcorn red pepper soup

It’s so corny – you have to try it!

The Heat is on: Pistachio Vanilla Wasabi Ice Cream

Are you feeling the heat? You’re lucky. Mid July in Paris and we’re thinking of putting the heating on indoors as we watch the torrential rain. At least there’s no need to worry about sunburn and slapping on the sunscreen. On the other hand, I’m seeing poor friends having to deal with soaring, sky-high, sweltering temperatures.

While our American friends are enduring the worst drought since 1956, they’re hopefully enjoying National Ice Cream month, at least. Although we’re not craving ice cream just now as much as we should in Paris, I have a solution for our differences in temperatures. Needing something ice cold? Needing ice cream but with some heat? Here’s my solution with an intriguingly delicious Pistachio Vanilla Wasabi Ice Cream.

One of my favourite French chefs is William Ledeuil of Ze Kitchen Galérie in Paris (and KGB). He makes the most incredible dessert consisting of a white chocolate and wasabi ice cream and serves it with a pistachio and green tea sauce, fresh strawberries and either crumble or wasabi meringues. The flavour combination is simply incredible!

I have been experimenting with the flavours that he concocts in his grand finale but twiddling with my own recipes at home. First I made pistachio, coconut and wasabi macarons (recipe in Mad About Macarons). This time, I’ve put the flavours together into just one ice cream to make it simple – after all, I’m a lazy gourmet!  I replaced the white chocolate with egg yolks (as macaronivores, we need the whites for macarons!) The result is a gluten free dessert, full of interesting flavours.

Pistachio-wasabi ice cream. Are you making a face?

Pistachio Vanilla Wasabi Ice Cream

200ml coconut milk (small carton)
300ml whole milk
50g ground pistachios
1 vanilla pod
1 tsp pistachio extract
pinch green and brown food colouring
(3 parts green, 1 brown)
5 egg yolks
100g caster sugar
4 tsp powdered milk
15g wasabi paste

1. Heat the milk, coconut milk and pistachios in a heavy-based pan with the vanilla pod which is cut in two lengthways. Bring to the boil, and turn off the heat for the vanilla to infuse in the creamy milk for 5-10 minutes.

2. Cream together the egg yolks and sugar in a large bowl until light and fluffy. Add the powdered milk, wasabi paste and pistachio extract and mix well.

3. Scrape out the seeds from the vanilla pod and add to the yolk cream. Discard the pod from the warmed coconut-milk and add the food colouring.

3. Pour the creamy milk onto the egg mixture whisking continuously. Return the mixture to the pan on a medium heat, whisking constantly until the custard thickens and coats the back of a spoon. Set the mixture aside to cool.

4. Once cool, place in the fridge for 1-2 hours before pouring into an ice cream maker to churn according to your ice cream maker.

Serve on fresh strawberries with pistachio macarons on the side.

Pistachio Vanilla Wasabi Ice Cream recipe

If you feel like a double intriguing wasabi wham – enjoy this with Pistachio, White Chocolate and Wasabi macarons (recipe on p65 of my first book, Mad About Macarons.)

Pistachio, Vanilla and Wasabi Ice Cream
Prep Time
15 mins
Cook Time
25 mins
Total Time
40 mins
 

The perfect summer ice cream with fresh strawberries - pistachio and wasabi ice cream with coconut and vanilla (this recipe requires an ice cream maker)

Servings: 10
Author: Jill Colonna
Ingredients
  • 200 ml / 7 fl oz coconut milk small carton
  • 300 ml / 11 fl oz whole milk
  • 50 g / 1.75 oz ground pistachios
  • 1 vanilla pod
  • 1 tsp pistachio extract
  • pinch green and brown food colouring 3 parts green, 1 brown
  • 5 egg yolks
  • 100 g / 3.5 oz caster sugar
  • 4 tsp powdered milk
  • 15 g / 0.5 oz wasabi paste
Instructions
  1. Heat the milk, coconut milk and pistachios in a heavy-based pan with the vanilla pod which is cut in two lengthways. Bring to the boil, and turn off the heat for the vanilla to infuse in the creamy milk for 5-10 minutes.
  2. Cream together the egg yolks and sugar in a large bowl until light and fluffy. Add the powdered milk, wasabi paste and pistachio extract and mix well.
  3. Scrape out the seeds from the vanilla pod and add to the yolk cream. Discard the pod from the warmed coconut-milk and add the food colouring.
  4. Pour the creamy milk onto the egg mixture whisking continuously. Return the mixture to the pan on a medium heat, whisking constantly until the custard thickens and coats the back of a spoon. Set the mixture aside to cool.
  5. Once cool, place in the fridge for 1-2 hours before pouring into an ice cream maker to churn according to your ice cream maker.
Recipe Notes

Serve on fresh strawberries with pistachio macarons on the side.

 

Jill Colonna

MadAboutMacarons.com