Amaranth Corn Chowder
This distinctively flavored chowder is ideal partnered with sourdough bread.
6 cups Vegetable Stock or vegetable broth
⅔ cup uncooked amaranth, rinsed
1 bay leaf
1 Tbs. plus 1 tsp. olive oil
1 tsp. ground cumin
1 large onion, diced
4 large cloves garlic, minced
1 medium red bell pepper, diced
½ tsp. dried oregano
4 cups fresh or frozen corn
1 tsp. canned chipotle chili in adobo sauce 3¼4 tsp. salt
⅛ tsp. freshly ground pepper
¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro
2 Tbs. fresh lime juice
2 Tbs. umeboshi vinegar
1 Tbs. umeboshi paste
1 Tbs. tamari or reduced-sodium soy sauce
- In large pot, combine stock, amaranth and bay leaf and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer, stirring occasionally, 25 minutes.
- Meanwhile, in large heavy skillet, heat 1 tablespoon oil over medium-high heat until hot but not smoking. Add cumin and stir 30 seconds. Add onion and cook, stirring often, until softened, about 3 minutes. Stir in garlic, bell pepper and oregano; reduce heat to medium and cook, stirring often, 5 minutes. Stir in 2 cups corn, chipotle and 1/2 teaspoon salt.
- Stir corn mixture into amaranth mixture. Cover partially, increase heat to medium and cook, stirring occasionally, 30 minutes. Discard bay leaf.
- Preheat oven to 450F. In small bowl, combine remaining 2 cups corn, 1 teaspoon oil and 1/4 teaspoon salt. Stir in freshly ground pepper. Spread in nonstick baking pan and roast until beginning to brown, about 15 minutes.
- Remove soup from heat. Stir in roasted corn, chopped cilantro, lime juice, vinegar, umeboshi paste and tamari. Transfer to blender or food processor (in batches if necessary) and puree until almost smooth, or puree directly in pot with immersion blender. Let stand, covered, at least 30 minutes before adjusting seasonings.
- Rewarm over low heat. Ladle into bowls, garnish with cilantro sprigs and lime slices and serve.