creamed corn with basil and parmesan
PREP TIME 10 mins, COOK TIME 30 mins
4 corn cobs, about 1lb 2oz (500g), kernel weight
4 tbsp unsalted butter
2 tsp olive oil
1 onion, finely chopped
1 cup good-quality hot chicken or vegetable stock
1⁄2 cup heavy cream
1 tsp all-purpose flour
1⁄2 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese
2 tbsp finely chopped basil
salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 Remove the kernels and “milk” from the corn cobs, as shown in the technique below. Try using really young, fresh corn for this recipe, as the skins will be softer and easier to break down on cooking.
2 Melt the butter and oil in a medium, heavy-based saucepan. Add the onion and cook over low heat for 5 minutes, until softened but not browned. Add the corn and its juices along with the stock to the pan; the corn should be barely covered by the liquid. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer, and cook, covered, for 15 minutes, until the corn starts to soften. If you prefer a smoother, creamed corn, use a hand-held blender to partially liquidize the corn while it is still in the pan.
3 Remove the lid, add the cream, sprinkle over the flour, and increase the heat. Cook over high heat, stirring frequently, for 7–10 minutes, until the cream has reduced and thickened and the corn is soft. Remove from the heat, then stir in the Parmesan and basil. Season to taste at the end of the cooking time. Salting at the beginning may cause the skin of the kernels to toughen and result in a less creamy texture.
Removing Corn Kernels:
1 Hold the corn cob upright on a chopping board and use a sharp knife to cut down the sides to release the kernels. Rotate the cob and repeat.
2 To extract the “milk,” hold the cob upright in a bowl and scrape down the sides with the knife’s blunt edge. This starchy juice will thicken the dish.