Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Summer Fest 2010: Week 2 -- Corn

Well, here we are at week 2 of the foodathon that is Summer Fest 2010! I was amazed at how many people posted recipes last week and such wonderful ones at that! Who knew you could do so many deliciously original things with cukesnzukes!

This week we tackle corn. Now I'm a big label reader and like many label readers I'm frustrated with the amount of high fructose corn syrup in packaged products. And I prefer the cattle I eat to dine on grass instead of -- corn. In fact, I'm generally ticked off that so much of our agriculture is centered around corn subsidies given to the mega-growers.

And then summer hits and all I want is to munch on corn on the cob. Or scrape it off the cob and eat it raw in salads. I especially love the way gorgeous red corn kernels visually ignite grains or pasta or other vegetables.

I'll slather cobs in softened butter and garlic, wrap them in foil and put them on the grill. Then roll them in Cotija cheese and sprinkle with Tajin or Tamarula sauce. In fact, I had something similar on the 4th of July made by the terrific MIHO gastro truck.

In my world, salsa suddenly needs corn. So does my gazpacho. I crave corn and scallion tamales from the farmers market. But, what I look forward to most of all is a visit to George's at the Cove for executive chef/partner Trey Foshee's sweet and creamy Chino Corn Risotto with Chanterelles and Burrata. It's the kind of dish you don't just want to eat, you want to dive into the bowl and eat your way out.

Awhile back I did a story on Trey and the restaurant. Trey gave me the recipe for his risotto, which I sent to my editor but for some reason it wasn't published. So, you get it here.

Chino Corn Risotto with Chanterelles and Burrata

Trey Foshee’s corn risotto celebrates the bounty of summer corn. It makes for a wonderful first course followed by grilled chicken or fish and lots of fresh summer vegetables. Be sure to use fresh corn, if possible on the day it was picked. Burrata, a fresh Italian cheese that combines mozzarella and cream, adds to the decadence of the dish.

Makes 6 appetizer-course servings.

Risotto Base
2 Tbs. butter
¼ cup onion, minced
8 oz. Carnaroli rice
½ cup white wine
1 ¾ cups hot chicken stock

In a large sauce pot heat the butter over medium heat. Add the onions and sweat, do not brown. Add the rice and start a timer for 18 minutes. Cook, stirring with a wooden spoon until they start to sizzle, about 2 to 3 minutes. Add the wine and stir until the wine is absorbed. Add one quarter of the hot chicken stock, stir until absorbed and you can see the bottom of the pan when you stir. Add another quarter and follow procedure above, then another quarter more. After 18 minutes add the last quarter, and season. At this point you can either continue on to the to serve section or, pour into a hotel pan and chill. Stir after about 15 minutes. You can hold it at this point for up to 24 hours.

Corn Puree
2 cups very fresh corn kernels
1 ½ cups chicken stock or water

Combine in a small pot and simmer over low heat for 15 minutes, transfer to a blender and blend until smooth, pass through a fine mesh strainer, chill and reserve.

To Serve
2 Tbs. butter
1 cup corn kernels
2 cups risotto Base
1 cup corn puree
½ cup chicken stock, warm
1 cup chanterelle mushrooms, cleaned and trimmed
1 Tbl. extra virgin olive oil
1 Tbl. butter
6 slices burrata

In a medium sauce pot heat one tablespoon of the butter over medium heat, add the corn kernels and cook until just soft, about 3 minutes. Add the risotto base, corn puree, and chicken stock. Bring to a simmer and stir gently with a wooden spoon. Cook over medium low heat, stirring for 3 to 4 minutes to allow the flavors to meld, add the other tablespoon of butter and stir.

Heat a sauté pan over medium high heat and add the oil. Add the chanterelles and sauté until cooked and lightly browned, add the butter and remove to a warm place.

Spoon the risotto in a shallow bowl, place a slice of burrata on top and spoon the chanterelles around.

Let's see what everyone else is up to this week -- and don't forget to add your own corn recipes in the comments section below! Next up: herbs, greens, and beans...

Nicole at Pinch My Salt: Creamed Corn with Bacon and Rosemary
Margaret at A Way to Garden: Vintage corn Americana slideshow, and no-frills creamed corn
The FN Dish: Creamed Corn-Off: Battle of the Southern Cooks
Alison at Food2: Freezing Corn  
Toby at Healthy Eats: Candied Corn, and 4 more easy recipes
Michelle at Cooking Channel: Browsing Corn Porn   
Judy/Tuscan Diva: Fried Polenta Crostini with Porcini Ragu
Jennifer of Gilded Fork: Corn: Sweet Versatility (history, uses & recipes from cocktails to cornbread)
Chef Mark: Gettin' Corny! (Musings from childhood, tips & fresh-corn recipes)
Caroline at The Wright Recipes: Pickled Corn with Summer Onion and Basil
Paige Orloff of The Sister Project: Life-Changing Corn Pancakes
Tara at Tea and Cookies: Farro Corn Salad with Tomatoes and Herbs
Food Network UK blog: Talking Corn
Shauna at Gluten-Free Girl and the Chef: Sweet Corn Risotto
Tigress at Tigress in a Jam: Cream Corn Scones

Now It's Your Turn!
This collaborative effort won't be much fun without you! The more info we all give, the more we'll all enjoy summer's harvest. Have a recipe or tip that fits any of our weekly themes? Starting with our posts of Wednesday, July 28, for five Wednesdays through 8/25 and possibly longer, you can contribute in various ways, big or small.
  • Contribute a whole post, or a comment—whatever you wish. It’s meant to be fun, viral, fluid. No pressure, just delicious. The possibilities:
  • Simply leave your tip or recipe or favorite links in the comments below a Summer Fest post on my blog any upcoming Wednesday, and then go visit my collaborators and do the same.
The cross-blog event idea works best when you leave your recipe or favorite links (whether to your own blog or someone else’s) at all the host blogs. That way, they are likely to be seen by the widest audience. Everyone benefits, and then we're all cooking with some great ideas.

Or go big: Publish entire posts of your own if you wish, and grab the big red tomato Summer Fest 2010 badge above (illustrated by Matt of Mattbites). We'll also be tweeting using #summerfood as our hashtag.

Here's the schedule:
  • 7/28: cukesnzukes
  • 8/4: corn
  • 8/11: herbs, greens, and beans
  • 8/18: stone fruit
  • 8/25 tomatoes
  • more to come if we all want it — stay tuned!
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