A few weeks back when I posted my recipe for Corn and Tomato Relish, I mentioned that fresh corn is one of the best deals at the farmers’ market this time of year. In my area, a dozen ears of fresh corn on the cob is $5. That’s a lot of food for not very much money. If you are thinking: “Gosh, Emily, there is only so much corn-on-the-cob that my family wants to eat. I’m not really interested in buying a dozen ears of corn every week’,” my answer to you is: there is SO much you can do with fresh corn besides eating it off the cob. Go ahead and buy those dozen ears, shuck ’em and cook ’em. What your family doesn’t eat, you can cut off the cob and use in any number of recipes, including these two for starters.
Poblano Peppers Stuffed with Corn and Chicken
Poblano peppers are available at farmers’ market and grocery stores in the summer. You may be familiar with them from Mexican restaurants where they are used to make chile rellenos. They are a little hotter than Bell peppers but not too spicy for most palates. This recipe is a great use for leftover corn and chicken. You can make this dairy-free but omitting the grated cheese, which I did for Zuzu’s portion.
8 large Poblano Peppers
1 cup cooked shredded chicken breast
Cooked Kernels from 4 ears of corn
3 Tb Extra-virgin olive oil
1 large onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup stone-ground cornmeal
3/4 cup chicken broth or water
1 small jalapeno pepper (optional), seeds and veins removed, diced*
1 tsp. each ground cumin and coriander
1/2 cup grated cheddar or Monterrey jack cheese (optional)
2 16 oz jars tomato or tomatillo salsa
Preheat the oven to 425. Heat the olive oil in a large deep skillet. Add the diced onion, minced garlic and chopped jalapeno pepper, if using, and saute over medium-low heat until softened but not browned. Season the onion and garlic well with salt and pepper and add the cumin, coriander and cinnamon. Cook a few minutes more until fragrant. Add the shredded chicken and corn kernels and toss to combine. Cook corn and chicken until heated. Stir in cornmeal and chicken broth. Remove from heat.
Cut the poblano peppers in half lengthwise to create deep pockets for filling. Carefully remove the seeds and veins. Pour the salsa in the bottom of a large Pyrex baking dish. (I used some tomatillo sauce that I canned earlier this summer, but if you don’t care for tomatillos, feel free to use a tomato salsa.) Place the poblano halves in the baking dish. Fill the poblanos generously with the corn and chicken mixture. Top with grated cheese if using. Cover dish tightly with aluminum foil and bake 45 minutes. Uncover and cook 10 minutes more until cheese is melted and browned. Serve hot.
*As always, please use caution when working with chili peppers. I often use rubber gloves. At the very least, wash hands thoroughly afterwards.
Zucchini is another inexpensive, late-summer farmers’ market favorite. I believe I paid $2 for three good-sized zucchini last week. Or if you are a gardener, you may have an abundance in your garden. Better yet, if you know a gardener, she may be fobbing off her extra zucchini on you. Accept! Zucchini is so versatile and very kid-friendly. Zucchini are terrific grilled or grated into a quick bread or muffins. Here I combine grated zucchini with corn kernels and chives in a pancake to create a delicious vegetarian main course or elegant appetizer. Top with a squeeze of lemon and a dollop of tangy plain Greek yogurt to cut through the richness of the pancake. This recipe is also available on Artizone.com, where you can find many of my original recipes. and order all the necessary ingredients to be delivered to your door!
3 1⁄2 Cups grated zucchini
1 1⁄2 Cups Corn kernels
2 Cloves Garlic, minced
1⁄2 Cup Cornmeal
1⁄2 Cup Flour
2 Tablespoons Chives, chopped
1 Pinch Cayenne pepper
1⁄4 Cup Vegetable Oil
Grate the zucchini with the large side of a box grater. Gently squeeze as much water out of the grated zucchini as possible. In a large bowl, beat the eggs. Add the drained grated zucchini, the corn kernels, the chopped chives and the garlic and toss to combine. Whisk together the cayenne pepper, flour and cornmeal. Sprinkle the flour-corn meal mixture over the vegetables. Gently stir to combine. Season well with salt and pepper. Heat the vegetable oil in a large non-stick skillet until hot. Drop spoonfuls of the batter into the skillet and press gently to flatten. When first side is browned, carefully flip and continue cooking until other side is browned. You can keep the cooked fritters warm in a 200 degree oven while you cook the rest of the batter. To serve top with dollops of Greek yogurt and lemon wedges.
Are you as much of a corn lover as I am? What are your favorite ways to cook with fresh corn?