Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Indian Street Corn

Summertime in New England is pretty wonderful.  Warm weather, stunning thunderstorms, great local produce.  This summer has provided all of those things, which is good because we got the short end of the stick last year - never-ending winter and it rained all summer long.  2009 weather sucked.  Oh and there was a tomato blight.

No blight this year.  Other than tomatoes, one of the best local veggies is, of course, corn!

Fun to prepare AND eat.  BTW, this is supposed to be a semi-suggestive corn photo (Gasp! - adult content!).  There are many ways to enjoy corn on the cob, but my favorite was one shared with me by a friend at a cookout a few summers ago.  It's very simple, involves cayenne pepper and lime, and leaves your lips burning.  And wanting more.  This is apparently the way some street vendors in India prepare and sell their corn.

I planned to come home Monday night and start my quest for the perfect quiche crust, but when you get home at 7:15 pm and you haven't even started the dough, sometimes you have to come up with something else.  I had decided on black bean and quinoa burritos and on the way home realized that a perfect side dish with this would be Indian Street Corn.  

You can prepare the corn a multitude of ways.  Stove top, grilled in the husk, grilled in aluminum foil, grilled on the hot coals (no husk or foil), or even in the microwave.  My favorite is grilled corn, but this Monday night we chose the quicker option - stove top.  I guess the quickest option would be microwave but I use the microwave for reheating purposes only.  


The burritos turned out great, although there was a mishap.  I have no idea how this happened but the quinoa failed me.  Maybe I failed the quinoa.  I've made it many times before, maybe there was too much water.  Anyways the quinoa became tasteless mush instead of a nice airy grain.  Reviewing all this in my mind, I am reminded that someone else helped prepare the grains while I was chopping...hmmm...

Needless to say, we had bean burritos sans quinoa - made with sauteed Vidalia onions, black beans, diced fire roasted green chilies, tomato, and a few dashes of cayenne.  Topped with chipotle cheddar cheese and sour cream.


Indian Street Corn

Ingredients:  Fresh Corn on the Cob
                     Cayenne Pepper
                     Lime (1 lime to every 2 cobs of corn)

1)  Shuck the corn.  Remove any of the corn silk.

2)  Cook the corn in whatever fashion you desire.  If cooking over stove top, set large pot of water over high heat to boil.  Add shucked corn, when the water comes to a rolling boil.  Cook until kernels are tender and look slightly engorged, about 5-7 minutes.  Remove from heat and drain corn.

3)  Prepare cayenne pepper and salt mixture.  I mix together a 2/3 salt and 1/3 cayenne pepper mixture.  For 2 people, I mixed together a large spoonful of salt with 1/2 spoonful of pepper (this was probably about the size of a tablespoon).  It is fine to eyeball it, I usually do.

4)  Cut the lime(s) in half.  Dip the lime in the cayenne/salt mixture and rub all over corn so that corn has a thin coating of the mixture.  Then begin squeezing the lime as you repeat the rubbing process.  I sometimes will apply a little more of the mixture at this point, but it is very hot so do it to taste.

5)  Enjoy!  I suggest having a glass of milk handy for those burning lips.


  1. I just heard about this on one of the food podcasts I listenend to (can't remember which...Good Food or Splendid Table maybe?). Makes me want to experiment with different corn toppings...

  2. In the July issue of Bon Appetit they have a recipe for Grilled Corn with Honey-Ancho Chile Butter http://www.bonappetit.com/recipes/2010/07/grilled_corn_with_honey_ancho_chile_butter
    Sounds Yummy!