LOW FAT : Sprucing Up Corn Chowder

Hot soups are usually thought of as cool weather cooking. But this soup is so fresh and light-tasting that you’ll want to serve it even as the first course for an outdoor summer barbecue.

Of course, it’s low in fat. The lightness comes from the vegetable broth used for the soup base, combined with chicken bouillon cubes for richness. Canned cream-style corn is stirred in along with cornstarch for thickening. If possible, use only very fresh shrimp rather then frozen. The flavor of the fresh is far superior to that of frozen.

A wonderfully flavorful cilantro pistou is spooned atop the soup just before serving. Oil is not used in this low-fat pistou --only fresh cilantro, garlic and Parmesan, with lemon juice for the liquid. If you are really watching the fat, sprinkle the soup with chopped cilantro instead of the pistou and you will save three grams of fat.

SHRIMP AND CORN SOUP WITH CILANTRO PISTOU 1 teaspoon butter 2 tablespoons minced onion 2 (14-1/2 ounce) cans vegetable broth 2 chicken bouillon cubes, crushed 2 (8 3/4-ounce) cans cream-style corn 2 tablespoons cornstarch dissolved in 2 tablespoons water 1 ear corn, roasted, cut into 1-inch chunks 1/2 pound shrimp, peeled and deveined Cilantro Pistou


Melt butter in large saucepan and saute onion until tender. Stir in vegetable broth and bouillon cubes. Stir in cream-style corn and heat to boiling. Stir cornstarch slurry into soup. Boil and stir until thickened and clear, 1 to 2 minutes.

Stir in cut-up corn and shrimp and continue to simmer until corn is hot and shrimp is opaque. Serve with about 1 tablespoon Cilantro Pistou per serving. Makes 6 servings.

Each serving of soup, without Pistou, contains about:

214 calories; 1,223 mg sodium; 58 mg cholesterol; 4 grams fat; 34 grams carbohydrates; 13 grams protein; 1.08 grams fiber.


Cilantro Pistou 2 bunches cilantro, stems removed 1 head garlic, (about 9 cloves), peeled 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

Blend together in food processor cilantro, garlic, Parmesan and lemon juice until finely chopped. Makes about 2/3 cup.

Each 1-tablespoon serving contains about:

47 calories; 173 mg sodium; 7 mg cholesterol; 3 grams fat; 1 gram carbohydrates; 4 grams protein; 0.07 gram fiber.