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cristina

Mexican Cooking Project #9

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Whether you're in the heart of Mexico or somewhere North of the Border, it's corn season.

 

Here in Mexico, this is the time of year to buy the tenderest, sweetest fresh-cut ears. In open air markets, off the back of a pickup truck, or in the local supermarket, corn's the thing right now.

 

North of the border, rural area farm stands featuring sweet corn have sprung up like mushrooms. Supermarkets and city farmer's markets are loaded with the sweetest of fresh sweet corns.

 

One of the finest street foods in Mexico is fresh corn, a wooden stick stuck into the end of each ear and boiled till the corn is tender. It's then served in a variety of ways:

 

(1) slathered with mayonnaise and sprinkled with powdered chile de árbol

and a bit of salt

(2) slathered with Mexican crema and liberally sprinkled with grated cheese

(queso Cotija if you can get it, parmesano if you can't)

(3) rubbed liberally with the cut side of half a lime dipped in powdered chile,

then salted.

 

Invite your friends over and have a corn-tasting. Lay in plenty of napkins.

 

For a marvelous fresh-corn soup that takes only moments longer to prepare than corn-on-a-stick, try this one:

 

Crema de Elote con Chile Poblano

Cream of Corn Soup with Chile Poblano

 

Prep Equipment

Sauté pan

Blender

Strainer

Soup pot

 

3 cups sweet corn kernels, freshly cut off the cob

1/2 white onion, minced

2 cloves garlic, minced

2 Tbsp unsalted butter

3 chiles poblanos, roasted and peeled

2 cups rich chicken stock

1 1/2 cups whole milk

1/2 cup Mexican crema

sea salt to taste

50 grams unsalted butter, chopped (separate use)

 

Sauté the corn kernels, the minced onion, and the minced garlic in 2 Tbsp unsalted butter until softened but not browned. Remove from heat.

 

Cut half of the roasted and peeled chiles poblanos into rajas (strips 1/4" wide). Roughly dice the other half of the chiles and add them to the sauté pan. Return briefly to low heat.

 

In the blender, combine the sautéed vegetables with enough chicken stock to make a smooth blend just thin enough to strain through a sieve into a soup pot. Add the remaining chicken stock, the milk, and the crema. Allow the mixture to simmer for five or six minutes as you incorporate the 50 grams of butter, a few pieces at a time.

 

At serving, decorate the soup with the reserved rajas of chile poblano.

 

Serves six.

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Calabacitas con Elote

 

2 lbs summer squash (I use yellow, or a mixture of yellow & zucchini), cut into generous bite-sized pieces

1 C corn kernals, cut from the cob (about 2 cobs)

1 T butter

1 small white onion, or 1/2 large, very coarsely chopped

3 tomatoes, peeled, coarsely chopped - fresh are better; can use canned

1 4-oz can mild green chiles, drained, very coarsely chopped (or fresh, blistered, peeled, seeded, very coarsely chopped), or more to taste

1 C favorite Mexican cheese if you can get it, mild Cheddar or Longhorn if you can't (or other favorite; I've used everything, including feta, "it's all good :blink: ), grated

S & P to taste

 

Boil squash until just barely tender. Don't overcook. Pour into colander and allow to drain thoroughly. Meanwhile, into saucepan put corn, butter, onion, tomatoes. Cook til onions are clear and corn is tender. Return drained squash to pan. Add chiles and simmer briefly to combine flavors. Add cheese and allow to melt. Serve immediately when cheese is melted.

 

You can make this in the winter, with canned corn, tomatoes, chiles. It's still very, very good but, obviously, not quite so good as with the fresh ingredients.

 

Sometimes I have this spooned over a baked potato for a veggie dinner.

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Crema de Elote con Chile Poblano

Cream of Corn Soup with Chile Poblano

 

thank you christina, that's very similar to the one i make. i like to take the cobs after the corn has been removed and simmer them in the chicken stock for 1/2 hour to add more corn flavor :blink:.

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Here's another:

 

Elotes Tiernos con Chiles de dos Tipos

Sweet Corn with Two Kinds of Chiles

 

6 ears fresh sweet corn

3 chiles poblanos, roasted and peeled

3 sweet red peppers, roasted and peeled

1 large white onion

4 Tbsp sweet butter

sea salt to taste

 

Cut the kernels off the ears of corn. Dice the chiles poblanos, the sweet red peppers, and the onion in 1/4" squares.

 

Sauté the peppers and onions in the butter until soft. Add the corn and continue to sauté until the corn is cooked but still crisp. Add sea salt to taste.

 

Serves one...oh wait, serves 6. Warning: this stuff is addictive.

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Sunday, I discovered a truck that sells elote in the parking lot of Plaza Santa Cecilia in east Tulsa. And it was excellent, served with the mayonesa, cheese and chili. Reminded me of the corn that I had when I was in San Miguel. I might run over for another this afternoon.

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One of the finest street foods in Mexico is fresh corn, a wooden stick stuck into the end of each ear and boiled till the corn is tender. It's then served in a variety of ways:

 

(1) slathered with mayonnaise and sprinkled with powdered chile de árbol

and a bit of salt

(2) slathered with Mexican crema and liberally sprinkled with grated cheese

(queso Cotija if you can get it, parmesano if you can't)

(3) rubbed liberally with the cut side of half a lime dipped in powdered chile,

then salted.

 

There's a vendor in LA that sells roasted corn with all of these condiments. He has a huge corn roasting machine. The corn is really sweet, with a little smoky flavor.

 

In case anyone is wondering, the vendor is a nomad he sets up shop in front of different grocery stores.

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There's a vendor in LA that sells roasted corn with all of these condiments. He has a huge corn roasting machine. The corn is really sweet, with a little smoky flavor.

 

Here the corn is roasted on the street corner in a little brazier, a few ears at a time. It's usually the tougher corn that's prepared this way, with the tenderest corn prepared and served as I posted earlier.

 

Both are wonderful.

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I don't think poblanos are in the farmers' market just yet, although they may be in the supermarket.

 

This group may be amused to know that last season I successfully created a 100% sourdough chile bread using poblanos, anchos and chipotles. Here it is:

 

dscn07288na.jpg

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Poblanos are at the farmer's market and they look BEAUTIFUL. I got some on Monday, I think at Yuno. Also there's a new Mexican produce vendor...I think I saw them on a Friday?

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That I don't know. This is a good blog to see what's being sold at the market:

 

Lucy's Blog.

 

I couldn't find any mention of poblanos on Saturday (or at all), not that this means there will be no poblanos on Saturday, I thought I'd post this link because it has been useful to me in the past.

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Poblanos are at the farmer's market and they look BEAUTIFUL. I got some on Monday, I think at Yuno. Also there's a new Mexican produce vendor...I think I saw them on a Friday?

Chiles rellenos......mmmmm.

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