July 7, 2015

Thai-Inspired Seafood Bisque

Recipe: Kristen Eppich

Sweet summer corn produces a velvety smooth texture for this cold soup. Simmering the cobs in coconut milk builds a delicious base that is balanced with fish sauce and a touch of heat from the chili oil.


  • 7 ears of corn
  • 1 lemongrass stalk
  • 1 400-mL can coconut milk
  • 2 1⁄2 cups chicken stock
  • 2 tbsp chopped ginger
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 2 tbsp chopped shallots
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • 1  tbsp fish sauce
  • 2  tbsp chopped basil plus more for garnish
  • 227-g package crab claw meat, shredded, divided
  • 2  tsp chili oil


Yield: Serves 4

  1. Slice kernels off each ear of corn to yield 4 to 5 cups of kernels. Cut or break 2 cobs into 2″ to 3″ pieces. Discard remaining cobs. Slice bottom inch off lemongrass stalk and discard. Cut a 3″ piece off the bottom to use. Peel and discard firm outer layers of stalk until center portion is exposed. Finely slice center portion and reserve. Combine chopped cobs with coconut milk, chicken stock, lemongrass and ginger in stockpot over high heat. Bring to boil. Reduce heat and simmer 10 minutes to release flavors. Remove from heat and allow to cool. Remove cobs and discard.
  2. Heat oil in saucepan over medium heat. Add shallots and cook 2 minutes, or until soft. Add corn kernels and cook until tender, approx. 8 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Remove from heat. Combine half the corn mixture with half the coconut milk mixture in blender. Purée until very smooth. Pour through fine sieve into large bowl. Repeat with remaining corn and coconut milk.
  3.  Stir fish sauce, 2 tbsp basil and 1⁄2 cup crab meat into soup. Season with salt and pepper. If soup is too thick stir in more stock. Refrigerate until cold, 2 to 3 hours. Taste and adjust seasoning.

For The Garnish

  1.  Ladle soup into chilled bowls and place a heap of remaining crabmeat in center of each bowl. Drizzle with chili oil and sprinkle with more basil.