Posts Tagged 'corn'

Cajun Corn

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Growing up, we usually had meals which featured a protein, a starch, and a vegetable. I usually liked the protein and starch well enough but, like most kids, I stayed away from the vegetables. At that point, I was what would could only kindly be described as a picky eater. The list of vegetables I’d eat was pretty limited. It didn’t help that about the only vegetable we ever seemed to eat was canned green beans.

I’ve gotten better about vegetables but I’m still significantly vegetable challenged. I like them enough but it’s rather frequent where I’m making dinner and can only muster enough effort for a protein and starch. To compound the problem, I don’t have that many different recipes for vegetables that I like. Vegetables must be cooked well for me to like them.

I don’t remember when I first started making this recipe. It was awhile ago. It’s pretty simple and doesn’t require a whole lot of effort. It’s easy to make along with something else. It also has strong flavors that go well with spicy foods.

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This time I tried something different: I used the Creole Seasoning recipe from the cookbook. In the past, I just used some Zatarain’s Creole Seasoning that I had purchased at some point in time. I suppose it might make me a bad person to use a premixed seasoning but it was easy and it was there.

I figured using a homemade spice blend would clearly be superior to the premixed variety. But I was wrong, sort of. The two different spice blends yield very different results. The Zatarain’s is spicier and saltier. The homemade spice blend has a smoky flavor and has the savory flavor of the herbs. I prefer the homemade spice blend but Angela liked the Zatarain’s. It’s still up in the air which I’ll use in the future. Most likely, I’ll use each at different times depending on what we’re eating it with.

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Cajun Corn
Adapted from Dinosaur Bar-B-Que: An American Roadhouse

4 tbsp butter
1 tbsp minced garlic
3 cups frozen corn, defrosted
5 tsp Creole Seasoning
salt
2 tbsp chopped fresh Italian parsley

  1. Melt the butter in a medium sauce pan over medium heat. When the butter has stopped foaming, add the garlic and sauté until golden, about 3 minutes.
  2. Add the corn to the sauce pan and mix well.
  3. Add the Creole Seasoning and season with salt to taste. Cook over medium heat for about 5 minutes to allow the corn to heat through.
  4. Remove the sauce pan from the heat and stir in the parsley.
  5. Serve immediately.

Serves 4.


Creole Seasoning
Adapted from Dinosaur Bar-B-Que: An American Roadhouse

1/2 cup paprika
1/2 cup powdered garlic
1/4 cup powdered onion
3 tbsp ground black pepper
2 tsp ground white pepper
2 tsp cayenne pepper
1/4 cup dried oregano
1/4 cup dried thyme
2 tsp ground cumin
2 tbsp sugar

  1. Mix together all ingredients and place in a sealable container.

Makes 2 1/2 cups.

Pasta with Corn, Pancetta, and Sage

Pasta with Corn, Pancetta, and SageAs a big fan of corn, pancetta, and pasta, one would think that combining them would be a no brainer. However, I never thought of it. And why would you? Pasta is Italian and corn is American. And Italian-American food has been relegated to cheap restaurants that those in the know would never eat at (apparently I am not in the know and I’m pretty happy there).

This recipe comes from The Zuni Cafe Cookbook which was helpfully provided to me by our local library (as I’m too poor to purchase it for myself right now). This dish is basically creamed corn with pancetta and a bit of sage mixed with pasta. The sage flavor is not particularly pronounced so increase the amount if you, unlike my wife, like sage a lot. The original recipe called for 5 to 6 small ears of corn but, given that I buy corn priced by the ear, I used 3 large ears instead. There may be a flavor difference but as long as I don’t try it, I’ll be happy with the cheaper version (that was, until recently, my theory with sushi; as long as I don’t know what I’m missing, I’m okay).

Pasta with Corn, Pancetta, and Sage
Adapted from The Zuni Cafe Cookbook

2 1/2 cups fresh corn (about 3 large ears)
1/2 cup butter (1 stick)
3 oz pancetta, cubed
6 sage leaves, diced
1 lb. fresh egg pasta, preferably linguine
salt and pepper
3 tbsp Parmesan cheese

  1. Using a knife, slice the corn kernels off of the ear into a bowl. Then, run the back of the knife at a 45 degree angle to the ear to force out all the starchy liquid. Combine the liquid and the corn.
  2. Boil waiter for the pasta and cook until slightly underdone. Reserve pasta water.
  3. Heat 1 tablespoon of butter over medium heat in a large skillet. Add the pancetta and saute until lightly browned.
  4. Turn off heat, add sage and 1 tablespoon butter. Allow the sage to seep for 1 minute.
  5. Add 6 tablespoons of butter and turn heat to medium. When the butter is melted, add the corn and liquid. Cook until warmed through and the liquid in the pan thickens slightly. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  6. Add cooked pasta to the corn and toss. Finish cooking the pasta with the corn.
  7. Off heat, add Parmesan cheese and retaste for seasoning.

Serves 4.


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