1poundmixed red peppersfor example, 2 red bell, 2 red pasillo, 1 red jalapeno, and 1 red serrano
1large white or yellow onion diced finely
A few grinds of black pepper
1tblschickpea miso or sweet white misooptional
8cupscorn cob stock or chickpea stock or waterrecipe below
2cupscooked chickpeashomemade cooked dried chickpeas or 1 can garbanzo beans drained and rinsed
Corn Cob Stock
4incorn cobskernels cut off for usethe soup
3-4garlic cloveslightly smashed
1/2onion rough choppedthe ends of onions will also do
12whole black peppercorns
Red Pepper, Chickpea & Corn Soup
Remove the kernels from the cobs and set aside or place in refrigerator until ready to use. To keep the kernels from flying about, cut the pointed end of the cob so it is flat. Place in a shallow bowl with the flat end in the bowl, then cut the kernels straight down the cob. If you are making the corn cob stock you can start that now, see below.
Heat a stock pot or Dutch oven to medium.
Mean while, remove the membrane and seeds of all of the peppers, rough chop for the next step in the blender.
Using a hand blender (stick blender), food processor or blender, blend the mildest pepper first, then start adding the other more piquant peppers, tasting after each one so you eventually get about 11/2cups of red pepper paste that appeals your taste. It should be more piquante than you like tasting alone at this stage as the other ingredients will balance the total taste. Blend in the miso (if using). Set aside.
Add the diced onion to the heated pan.
When the onions have picked up some color and start to turn a little translucent (about 2 minutes), move them to the outer edge of the pan and add the grated garlic and smear on the bottom of the pan so it can stick.
Add the dry spices to the pan to toast a little. Continue cooking another 2 minutes or until the garlic becomes aromatic and slightly golden (don’t allow to brown or burn).
Pour in the red pepper paste to the pan slowly while stirring and rubbing the garlic off the bottom of the pan and cook or another 2–3 minutes.
Stir in the corn kernels and the cooked chickpeas.
Start adding the corn cob stock, chickpea stock, water or water 1 cup at a time, stirring after each.
Cover the pan and let simmer about 30 minutes.
Top with homemade garden salsa fresca (the garden salsa fresca pictured above on the soup uses Lemon Balm instead of cilantro. Both herbs have a mild citrus taste and are good in the salsa and with this soup.
Corn Cob Stock
Remove the kernels from the cobs and set aside for the dish you are preparing or place in refrigerator until ready to use.
Heat a stock pot to medium.
Add the corn cobs, garlic, onion and spices and cook until fragrant (don’t allow to get dark or burn, not tasty in a stock).
Add 9–10 cups of water, bring to boil. Some water will evaporate during the simmering leaving about 8 cups when the stock is finished.
Once at a boil, lower heat to adjust for a simmer (light rolling boil) and simmer for a minimum of 20 minutes and up to 1 hour.
Allow to cool. Strain and place in containers for refrigerator or freezer loosely covered until cool enough to store in the refrigerator or freezer. It will last in the refrigerator for about 1 week or the freezer for 2–3 months.