Nothing says summer like fresh corn, and now we get to enjoy it our farm shares. Last week after I got home from picking up my bounty, I peeled back the tender husks and actually ate a whole cob raw. That’s right – raw. The tender kernels popped delicately between my teeth, prompting me to close my eyes and just enjoy the moment.
Unlike corn that’s been sitting on the grocery shelf, our corn was picked just hours before. This means the naturally occurring sugars are still present and haven’t had time to turn to starch. I strongly recommend eating your corn within a day or two. After that, the delicate flavors fade and become dull.
Of course there are a thousand and one ways to eat corn – from raw, to steamed, to roasted. But my personal favorite is grilled. I really enjoy the flavors of chili, lime and cilantro, so just after the corn comes off the grill, I brush it lightly with a compound butter and immediately dig in. The intense flavors of the chipotle chile, cilantro and lime enhance rather than cover the great taste of the corn. If you’re not a big fan of spice, simply omit the chile and instead add a generous pinch of smoked paprika.
Grilled Corn with Chipotle Lime Butter
From the kitchen of Chef Tse
8 medium ears corn with husks
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
1/2 chipotle chile, chopped fine
1/2 teaspoon adobo sauce (from chipotle chile)
1 tablespoon cilantro, chopped
Salt and pepper
Using a knife or scissors, cut off the tassel from tip of corn. Remove all but innermost layer of husk around corn. Kernels should be covered but almost visible through the husk. Soak in cold water one hour.
Prepare grill for medium high heat. Zest lime and place in a small bowl. Cut lime into 8 wedges and set aside. To lime zest add butter, chile, adobo sauce and cilantro. Mix until well combined. Set aside.
Grill corn until husks begin to blacken, about 2 minutes. Using tongs, turn corn one quarter turn and grill another 2 minutes. Repeat on remaining two sides. Remove from grill and let cool on serving platter 3 to 5 minutes.
Remove husks and any remaining corn silk. Brush each ear lightly with 1/2 teaspoon chipotle butter. Reserve remaining butter for another use. Squeeze 1 lime wedge over each ear and sprinkle with salt and pepper if desired. Serve immediately.