Corn and Collard Soup

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This recipe was prepared by Chef John Maxwell on Real Virginia, Virginia Farm Bureau’s weekly television program.

Maxwell, a certified executive chef, culinary educator and member of the American Academy of Chefs, shares delicious seasonal recipes in a Real Virginia segment sponsored by Virginia Grown, a program of the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services.


Corn and Collard Soup

2 tablespoons corn oil or other vegetable oil
¼ cup minced garlic
1½ cups chopped onions
5 cups chicken stock
½ cup white corn grits
6 ounces Virginia link sausage, cut diagonally into ¼" slices
4 ounces collard greens, stemmed and thinly sliced crosswise
5 cups heavy cream
kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1 cup corn kernels, cooked

In a large soup pot, heat the oil and sauté half the garlic and ½ cup of the onions until the onions begin to clear. Add the chicken stock, and bring the mixture to a boil. Stream in the grits, stirring constantly so they don’t clump, until all the grits are in the stock. Lower the heat to a simmer, and stir often until the grits soften, about 20 minutes.

In a large sauté pan, fry the sausage slices until just done. Add the remaining garlic and onion, and sauté until soft. Add the shredded collards, stirring until they turn a bright dark green. Add the sausage/collard mixture to the cooked grits, and stir well. Thin the soup with heavy cream and additional stock to achieve a smooth, pourable consistency.

Adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper. Add the corn, and simmer until the flavors blend, about 10 minutes, then serve.

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