Say you've got fresh corn on the cob, and a party to throw. What's the easiest, most crowd-pleasing thing you can do? If you have a grill, just throw those cobs right on it, shucked or unshucked. But say you want to be more original, or you don't have a grill? Whip up some corn pudding. Better yet, whip up Top Chef Season 7 alum Stephen Hopcraft’s corn pudding. This variation on English savory custards is also a Southern staple, and Stephen's version is a deservingly popular menu item at his STK Las Vegas. It makes a perfect side dish for pretty much anything you're serving on the 4th, from burgers to sausages to seafood and veggies. (And hey, if you have no plans, make a batch and indulge in it yourself all week long.)
Stephen's recipe is the perfect blend of a classic corn dish and a contemporary pudding—plus it's easy, cost-effective and did we mention insanely delicious? Note: If you do have a grill, save the corn husks and scoop the pudding into them for an extra-festive way to serve this dish.
Sweet corn pudding
¼ cup unsalted butter
4 cups fresh corn kernels (about 4 whole ears of corn)
Salt to taste
White pepper to taste
½ cup half and half
½ cup of milk)
1 tablespoon sugar
1 tablespoon fine cornmeal
Melt ¼ cup of butter in a small sauté pan, but do not brown the butter.
Sauté 2 cups of corn kernels in the butter and season with salt and white pepper to taste. Cook until the corn is soft with no added color.
In a small saucepan, bring the 1/2 cup of half and half to a simmer. On a low flame.
Once simmering, add the sautéed corn to the half and half, and cook on low heat until the mixture starts to boil, about 5 minutes.
While the mixture is cooking, take the remaining 2 cups of the corn and ½ cup of milk, place both ingredients in a blender, and blend until a smooth puree appears.
Once the corn mixture on the stove has come to the boil, add in 1/2 cup of the corn puree, along with the sugar and cornmeal; whisk the mixture until it's thick and the cornmeal has dissolved. This step should take around 5 minutes. Adjust the seasoning and serve in either individual serving portions or family-style. Garnish with finely sliced chives on top.
Chef Stephen Hopcraft
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