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Grilled Mexican Street Corn
Why Mexican Street Corn?
Traditionally corn is something we make on the side, boiling up a few ears and finishing up with butter, salt, and pepper. It's delicious, no doubt, but this makes it so much more! The flavors are vast and different, taking the sweetness of the corn, sourness and tang of lime, spice of chili powder, and the tangy somewhat bitter taste of parmesan. It pairs well with almost any grilled or Mexican dish. Plus it is absolutely beautiful and really fun to make and eat! My version is not the classic way of making it, being that I don't particularly like mayonnaise, which is typically used. But it's absolutely delicious and I hope you enjoy it! You will need the following:
- 8 Ears of Corn, Unshucked
- 2 Limes
- 1 Cup Parmesan Cheese, Grated
- 2 Tablespoons Chili Powder
- 1 Stick Butter, Softened
- 3 oz Cream Cheese, Softened
Start by peeling back the husks of the corn, being careful not to tear them off. They should peel back and sit, exposing the corn and the corn hair. You will be resealing the corn in their husks soon so they can cook on the grill without drying out or burning. The husks will also keep our ingredients from burning off or melting away into your grill. Once the husks are peeled back, do your best to remove as much of the corn hair as you can. I find the best way to do this is to wring the corn with your hands until all the hair is removed. Once this step is completed you can begin to flavor your corn.
Flavoring Your Street Corn
Now that your corn is all clean and ready to be coated, it's time to get our flavors going! In a bowl mix your butter, cream cheese, chili powder, and a bit of lime zest into a bowl. Thoroughly mix them together until they are well incorporated. Using a rubber grill brush, or a spoon if that's all you have, evenly coat each ear of corn entirely around. Once each ear is coated, rewrap the corn with their husks so none of the yellow corn is showing. Now that they're safely nestled up in their husks, it's time for the grill!
Grilling the Corn
Grilling the corn is the easiest part of this entire process. Heat your grill on high heat, and place the corn so that they husks are still covering all parts of the corn. If you can't cover a particular spot for some reason, don't worry. As long as most of the corn is covered it will be fine. Grill the corn, rotating every so often, for a total of about 10-12 minutes. When the husks of the corn are all blackened and burnt, you should be good to go. Remove the burnt husks, they should just fall off, and plate your corn. Be careful! These will be extremely hot!
Now that our corn has been coated in buttery, cheesy, chili powdered goodness, it's time to finish up the flavoring and the presentation! Take the Parmesan cheese and sprinkle it over the grilled corn, rotating as you go so that it sticks to all sides. Once the ears of corn are all well coated, take one of your limes and squeeze the juice over the top of all the pieces. Leave your second lime cut into quarters for anyone who would want more later, or use them as a garnish! Sprinkle a bit more chili powder on top for color and you're finished! You can also garnish these with cilantro, green onion, or more lime zest if you want to add a bit of green color to them to make them pop! Give the corn a minute or two to cool down so you don't get burnt lips, and dig in!
So Many Uses for Corn Cobs
Using Eaten Corn Cobs
Now that you've enjoyed the delicious corn, you'll most certainly have a load of corn cobs left over. You, like me, probably will just throw them away, but before you do here are a few things you could do with them otherwise! If you chop the cobs up small, they work great for composting! Just make sure to cut them up because the inner core is very tough and can take awhile to break down otherwise. Another interesting thing I found was making a corn stock! If you take three or four of your cobs and shave them down clean, you can use them for stock. Just take the cobs and throw them into a pot of water, salt heavily, and boil until the kitchen smells like corn. Strain the water into a jar and you can corn stock available to add that great flavor to any dish. And if all else fails, it's never too late to make a corn cob pipe!
Try With a Main Dish of:
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Questions, Comments, or Criticisms?
Let me know in the comments below what you think this would pair well with, or any praise or criticism of the dish! I look forward to reading and responding to any questions as well! Also, please be sure to keep an eye out for any new recipes I post or pair with this dish! And as always, keep eating good!