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10 Easy Ways To Add Character To The Corn At Your Cookout

Jun 25, 2015 11:30AM ● By Victoria Pipas
We all love a good ear, especially a farm-fresh one. But let’s face it—even butter gets boring slathered on corn at every meal. That sweet, starchy staple of summer is the perfect canvas for a multitude of different flavors, ranging from spicy Mexican to a sweeter, dessert-like variation featuring cinnamon and sugar. You might enjoy trying one or more of these creative alternatives to butter and even be inspired to invent some of your own! Read on for 10 easy ways to add character to the corn at your cookout.

1.Soy Corn: Mix hoisin sauce with a few dashes of soy sauce and a squeeze of lime, and brush the mixture onto husked ears of corn. Drizzle with sesame oil and sprinkle lightly with red pepper flakes. Grill corn and then sprinkle with sesame seeds when done. Serve atop a bed of rice to soak up the juices.

2 BBQ Corn: For a vegetarian option at backyard barbecues, serve these tasty ears as the entrée or as a delicious side dish. Brush husked ears with a mixture of 2 Tbsp melted butter, 3 Tbsp BBQ sauce, and a dash of hot sauce. Grill and serve alongside other classic barbecue fare like hot dogs and watermelon.

3. Chipotle Lime Corn: Start with ears that have been steamed or grilled. In a bowl, combine 2 Tbsp mayo with 1 Tbsp lime juice, one very finely chopped jalapeño pepper, and a few dashes of chili powder. Brush mixture in a thin layer across ears, and then sprinkle with fresh chopped cilantro. Squeeze on extra lime and serve with a bowl of spicy salsa for dipping.

4.Pesto Corn: In a food processor, blend 1 cup fresh basil, 1 cup fresh parsley, a few sprigs of spearmint, ½ cup olive oil, 1 Tbsp minced garlic, ¼ cup pine nuts, and salt and pepper. Brush mixture onto warm, steamed ears, and then sprinkle with grated Parmesan.

5. Maple Bacon Corn: You won’t need any butter here, thanks to the juiciness provided by the bacon fat. Brush husked ears with a light coating of maple syrup, then wrap each one with a strip of uncooked bacon. Grill until corn is tender and bacon is crispy.

6. Avocado Corn: Steam ears. In a small bowl, mix one ripe avocado, 1 Tbsp minced garlic, a squeeze of lime juice, salt and pepper, and a finely minced Serrano chile pepper. Spread over warm ears and sprinkle with salty queso fresco.

7. Curry Corn: In a bowl, mix 2 Tbsp plain Greek yogurt with 1 tsp curry powder, a dash of cumin, and salt and pepper. Brush onto warm, steamed ears and sprinkle with chopped mint and cilantro.

8.Roasted Red Pepper Corn: In a food processor, combine 1 cup roasted red peppers (roasted in the oven with olive oil and salt), 2 Tbsp minced garlic, ¼ cup olive oil, ½ cup parsley, ¼ cup grated Asiago cheese, and salt and pepper. Brush evenly over hot, steamed corn, and sprinkle with shredded mozzarella for a melty masterpiece.

9.Dessert Corn: Who says you can’t have your cake and eat it too? It may sound weird, but saving your corn for dessert is a great way to get your veggies and enjoy a sweet snack at the same time. In a small bowl, mix 1Tbsp honey and 2 Tbsp soft butter. Brush mixture onto warm, steamed ears and sprinkle with another mixture of 2 Tbsp sugar and 1 tsp cinnamon.

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