In the summer heat, we think we crave cold swims, iced coffee, and cool gazpacho all the time. While those things are wonderful, they’re not the whole story. We still love hot showers, fresh-brewed coffee, and steaming soup in the summer. We’re here to make a case for including summer soup in your meal plan.
First, the proof: in some of the hottest climates in the world, the local food is both hot (temperature) and hot (highly spicy). In Thailand, a traditional diet features spicy curries, in India there’s daily hot tea, and in Fiji the locals love spicy coconut stews. It’s time to trust the local wisdom. These steamy stews and teas can actually cool the eater down.
Why? Though it’s counter-intuitive, when you eat hot food, your body notices. Receptors relay the hotness to the brain, and your brain starts to cool you down. The same response occurs for spicy hot as for temperature hot, one reason we added birdseye chiles to our cool cucumber salad. The body’s “cooling system” may make you sweat as you eat, but by the time you’re finished, you’ll be cool as a cucumber.
The eating-hot-food-in-summer phenomenon happens in the U.S. too. New England is home to infamously muggy summers. It’s also where the epitome of summer soups was born–Corn Chowder.
Good sweet corn makes this soup shine, and corn is best in July and August. That makes summer the perfect time to cook up this hot, vegetable-laden bowl. Potatoes and a dash of cream add richness and thickness to the delicious broth. Radishes and micro celery bring even more summer spirit.
So open the windows, turn on the stove, and get ready to heat up–and then cool down–with our deliciously seasonal, and unabashedly hot Summer Corn & Vegetable Chowder.