As many of you know, I usually pack up my family and head to sunny Arizona for spring break. My in-laws have a winter home there, and we all love to hang out together, soaking up the sun by the pool, hiking in the mountains, and yes-I usually cook to my heart’s content. This is win-win for all of us, as my mother-in-law is a willing sous chef, my kids like to get in on the action and my father-in-law loves to try new foods. This year, I had all kinds of new favorites to try out on them, and they didn’t disappoint.
First up on my list of things to make while in Arizona was Mexican Street Corn, otherwise known as Elotes. I first ate a version of this amazing corn from a food truck, while enjoying cocktails with friends at Tattersall Distilling. Mexican Street Corn is my new favorite way to eat corn on the cob. It is so delicious it even makes up for the corn between your teeth. I made this as a side dish to serve with a grilled flank steak. A few minutes into dinner and we all had lime juice and special sauce running down our faces (note, no pictures of that!).
Mexican Street Corn is a fabulous blend of cotija cheese (yes, you can get this in the deli section of the grocery store, even in Minnesota), ancho chile pepper and lime juice . It is creamy, salty, tart with just a hint of spice. There are many recipes out there for Mexican Street Corn, but when there is one by my culinary hero, J. Kenji Lopez-Alt, well…why would you make anything else? (P.S. check out Food Lab, the latest cookbook by this guru, it belongs on everybody’s cookbook shelf.)
This is the perfect recipe for a hot summer day when the corn is plentiful and sweet. Even if you’re currently in Minnesota (like we are now) just waking up to spring, it’s never too early to start planning for summer…
- ½ cup mayonnaise
- ½ cup sour cream
- 1 cup finely crumbled Cotija cheese
- 1 teaspoon Ancho chile powder
- 2 cloves of garlic, finely minced
- ½ cup cilantro, finely chopped
- 12 ears of corn
- 1 lime, cut into wedges
- Heat grill.
- Pull husks of corn back and wrap husks with aluminum foil, leaving corn exposed.
- Remove all cornsilk from exposed corncobs.
- Place corn on grill, over low heat, rotating every few minutes, until tender and slightly charred, approximately 8-10 minutes.
- Place corn on a large platter.
- Unwrap husks and discard foil.
- Combine mayonnaise, sour cream, cotija cheese, chile powder, garlic and cilantro in a medium sized bowl. Stir until well-mixed.
- Using a large spoon or knife, spread the corn with the mayonnaise mixture, coating all sides of the corn.
- Squeeze lime over corn.
- Sprinkle with additional ancho chile powder.
- Serve while warm.