This is NOT your mama's can of creamed corn! Instead, it's Alton Brown's recipe for homemade creamed corn, full of summer-fresh corn sweetness and real corn kernels, accented with fresh rosemary or fresh lavender. This is absolutely gorgeous, a must-make recipe when summer's sweet corn is at its finest.
Families sometimes give special names to special foods and even not-so-special but favorite dishes. There’s the alphabet name: ask for HMO when you’d like my friend Elise to cook up hamburger with macaroni and onions. There’s the toddler name: ask for a poobah fafa and you’ll get a peanut butter sandwich in my then-baby sister’s lingo.
As a kid, a ‘Deluxe’ was mashed potatoes topped by creamed corn poured from a can, my mother’s attempt to extend leftovers with an incongruous air of 'haute'. I loved that comfort-food combination then, still do!
As an adult, a cook and a foodie, however, I revel in re-discovering the fresh versions of vegetables today known in their less-than-fresh forms.
FRESH CREAMED CORN is nothing like the toothless stuff from a can. The kernels are plump and full of corn flavor. All on its own, no mashed potatoes required, it’s a luxurious side vegetable, deluxe indeed.
FRESH CREAMED CORN
Time to table: 30 minutes
Makes about 4 cups (easy to halve)
- 8 ears fresh corn
- 1 tablespoon bacon fat or butter
- 1/2 an onion, diced small
- Kosher salt to taste
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon turmeric (or curry powder, for color only so optional)
- 2 tablespoons yellow cornmeal (not stone-ground)
- Sprig of fresh rosemary or fresh lavender, optional
- 1 cup whole milk (see TIPS)
- Salt & especially pepper to taste
Leaving stems on for handles, husk the corn (see TIPS). With one hand, hold an ear tip-down in center of a large bowl. With a knife, slice off swaths of corn kernels top to bottom. When kernels are off, use the knife’s dull edge to scrape the cob top to bottom on all sides, collecting remaining pulp and milk in the bowl (see TIPS).
In a large skillet, melt bacon fat on medium til shimmery. Add onion, cook gently til translucent (see TIPS). Add corn and salt, cook for 2 – 3 minutes, stirring often, til liquid begins to cook off. Stir in sugar, turmeric, cornmeal and rosemary or lavender. Add milk, cook til corn is soft, 2 – 3 minutes. Remove rosemary or lavender, season to taste.
Serve and savor, immediately or if you like, make in advance and gently rewarm.
More Recipes for Summer's Best Sweet Corn
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This is the last Kitchen Parade column to appear in print in my local papers, as they tighten their belts to face a weak economy. It’s been a thrill to write for you, to hear from readers touched by the stories or inspired by the recipes, to carry on the column my mom started nearly 50 years ago. I thank you, I thank Dwight and Don and all the staff at the papers.
But -- good news, new Kitchen Parade recipes will continue to be published here online at KitchenParade.com. First, I've already written nearly a year's worth of new columns. Second, I also publish online only recipes, family favorites like my Mom's Blueberry Coffeecake and Homemade Frozen Yogurt with Blackberry Sauce.
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