Tue May 24, 2011
For die-hard Meatwavers, you may have noticed that I've gone a full year with regular posts here, which is triumph after the first three years of throwing up a recipe here and there. In keeping the content up, I've let aspirations of site development fall to the wayside—new design, easy printing, and recipe optimization all seem a long way off. In the fall, with well over 100 posts up, I did make one quiet change though, a search feature that was long overdue. In a constant struggle on trying to decide if I want to pay to remove the ads on it (I hate ads), I keep an eye on what my meaty minions are searching every crevice of this site for. One thing that keeps popping up that has been a big ommision is corn.
Corn is such a backyard staple, it's just not something I felt was really exciting to expand upon, but as I noticed interest in grilling these ears, I started to think more about it and realized that yes, indeed, there is a lot to this seemingly benign food.
First is corn preparation. In my early years, I used to peel back the husk, remove the silk, tie back the husk and soak before grilling. This process is quite arduous when cooking for a crowd, and I started to move towards foil instead of using the aesthetically pleasing natural wrapper. I started to realize I was getting much better results this way, especially if the corn was buttered and seasoned prior to being foiled. The foil was providing just enough protection to keep the corn protected during the cook, but letting enough heat through to still give some nice browning to the kernels here and there—what's grilled corn without a little char?
On a covered grill over high heat, the ears take about 20 minutes to cook, with a quarter turn every 5 minutes. With the butter, season, and foil method, the ears come off the grill ready to eat and delicious, but that long cook offers a chance to consider a world of toppings.
Here I like to play around and corn really becomes interesting. For this batch, I threw together a compound butter of chili powder, cayenne, and lime to slather on once they were done cooking.
Adding this at the end took the corn to a whole new level. The sweetness of the kernels put the spicy butter in check, and together they created a flavor that was incredibly well-balanced.
Now that I'm bumping corn up into the realm of "blog worthy," I'll be be sure to document all the different incarnations and rightfully make corn a proud contender among all the meaty goodness that surronds it at The Meatwave.
Corn With Chili Lime Butter
6 ears corn, husked
1/4 pound butter at room temperature, plus 3 tablespoons
2 teaspoons chili powder
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
Zest of 1 lime
Juice of 1/2 lime
Freshly ground black pepper
Lime wedges for serving
1. In a small bowl, whisk together 1/4 pound of the butter, chili powder, cayenne pepper, lime zest, and lime juice until thoroughly combined Set aside.
2. Lightly butter the corn with the remaining butter and season with salt and pepper to taste. Wrap ears individually in aluminum foil.
3. Light one chimney full of charcoal. When all the charcoal is lit and covered with gray ash, pour out and spread the coals evenly over the charcoal grate. Clean and oil the grilling grate. Place the foiled corn on the grill and cook until tender and slightly charred, about 20 minutes, turning 4 times during cooking. Remove from the grill and let cool for 3 to 5 minutes.
4. Open the foil, slather each ear in the chili-lime butter, and serve with the lime wedges.