CORN VELVET SOUP (COLD)
6 ears fresh corn, husked
6 cups chicken broth
3 shallots, chopped
1 onion, chopped
6 tablespoons crème fraîche or sour cream
1/4 cup minced English hothouse cucumber
2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives
Cut each ear of corn crosswise in half, place in a large pot, add 5 cups broth, shallots, and onion, bring to boil, reduce heat, cover, and simmer until corn is very tender, transfer corn to large bowl to cool, reserve broth.
Cut corn kernels off cobs, return 4 cups corn kernels to broth (reserve extra corn for another use). Working in batches, puree soup in blender until very smooth, strain through fine sieve set over large bowl, press on solids with a spoon to extract juices, discard solids. Mix in enough additional chicken broth to thin soup to consistency of heavy cream, season to taste with salt and pepper. Cover and refrigerate soup until cold, about 4 hours. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Keep refrigerated.)
Ladle soup into 6 bowls. Top each with dollop of crème fraîche. Sprinkle with cucumber and chives and serve.
Makes 6 servings.