Fresh from the Spring House
Winners of “Iron Chef America,” team Hastings will be keeping it close to home this summer offering up the freshest dishes made from Alabama and regional ingredients. Enjoy!
Chefs Rob McDaniel and Chris Hastings*
Spring Vegetable Stew with Corn Broth
Corn Stock and Broth
3 Ears of Corn
1 Carrot, peel and cut into a large dice
1 Onion, cut into a large dice
3 Stalks of Celery, cut into a large dice
2 Bay Leaves
8 Black Peppercorns
1 Head Garlic, Halved
16 Baby Carrots
1 Bunch Jumbo Asparagus
2 Cups English peas, shelled
To make the corn stock, start by shaving the corn kernels away from the cob and set kernels aside. Next, place onions, celery, carrots, garlic, thyme, black peppercorns, and the bay leaves in a pot of cold water with the shaved cobs. Bring to a simmer. Simmer for 30 minutes, then strain with a sieve or colander and cool. Set aside.
For the vegetables, use baby carrots, asparagus, English peas, and garlic scapes.(NOTE: Garlic scapes are the tops of the garlic that are about to go to bloom. They lend a slightly sweet garlic taste. We get ours from a local farmer from Booger Hollow in Dadeville.)
When working with the asparagus, be sure to cut off the woody end at the bottom before blanching. Blanch all of the vegetables separately in salted water and remove when tender. Then, place them directly into ice water to keep the colors bright.
Using the corn kernels previously shaved from the cob, lightly sauté them in a pan with a little bit of canola oil, salt and pepper. Be careful not to get the pan too hot—you don’t want to brown the corn. When done, set the vegetables aside and reserve.
To make the corn broth, add the sautéed kernels to a blender with 4 cups of the corn stock. Puree until smooth, adjust seasoning to taste.
To finish, reheat all of the vegetables in the corn stock. In a separate pot, heat the pureed corn broth. Plate the vegetables in a shallow bowl, add 2 ounces of the corn broth. Next, using a slotted spoon, remove the heated vegetables from the stock and place on top of the broth. Finally, add a protein of your choice. We prefer a sautéed Red Snapper.
Springhouse at Russell Crossroads • 12 Benson Mill Road • Alexander City, AL 35010 256.215.7080 • springhouseatcrossroads.com
* Special congratulations go to Chef Chris Hastings on another outstanding win — a 2012 James Beard Foundation award, considered the "Oscars of the food world." Nominated five times in six years, Hastings won the accolade under the category Best Chef: South. Cheers to you, Chef!