This is an insanely brilliant dish made of innumerous "green" components and it's the ideal thing to be eating in the depths of this bone-chilling winter that we are having here in New York.
This recipe is quite easy but do follow the instructions scrupulously. The tastes do not quite come together until the end so you will need to have some faith.
The source is Diana Kennedy whose research is fastidious and the recipes correspondingly mind-blowingly delicious.
The idea is "green, green, green". There are five green components in the recipe and they are all necessary to get the taste right. The corn is the supporting player because, well, corn and Mexico, right? Originator of the product and all that.
The real stars are the greens.
4 large tomatillos (or 10-12 small ones)
1 large onion (finely chopped)
2 cloves garlic (finely chopped)
4 cups corn kernels (frozen is fine)
2/3 cup green peas (frozen is fine)
6-8 sprigs cilantro
2 poblano chillies (prepped, read below)
3 large romaine lettuce leaves
5 cups chicken broth
fried tortilla strips
Remove the papery skin of the tomatillos and cook the fruit in water till they are soft. Drain and set aside.
Meanwhile, prep the poblano's. Roast them directly over an open flame till they are scorched. Put them in a paper bag or just wrap in aluminum foil for 10 minutes. When they are soft, remove the blackened skin. Do not wash them. Dip your hand in water if you need to and rub off the skin. When skinned, cut open and remove the seeds and the veins from inside and chop into large pieces. Don't worry too much. They will get puréed.
Turn the tomatillos into a sauce in the blender and set aside in a bowl.
Put the corn, green peas, cilantro, poblano peppers, lettuce leaves, and 2 cups of broth into the blender and blend to a fine mixture. Pass this mixture through a medium food mill and set aside in a separate bowl.
Heat up the butter in a large pot. Add the onions and garlic and let it fry for at least 5 minutes. Add the tomatillo sauce and let it cook until the raw smell disappears. This step is crucial.
Add the second blended broth with salt to taste and let it cook for 5-6 minutes. This mixture has a tendency to stick to the bottom so make sure you keep scraping. Add the rest of the broth and let it cook for at least 20 minutes.
Serve with the fried tortilla strips on top.