Corn, glorious corn!
The picture in the book for this recipe looked divine. Despite my dislike of creamed corn as a child, I decided I was going to try this one anyway (I only liked corn on the cob. I could watch my grandmother cut it off the cob and still wouldn’t eat it because it was no longer on the cob… what can I say? I’ve always been particular.) So I was taking a big leap when I picked this recipe. Hubby and I both adore fresh corn, so I was quite appalled when all I found last fall was corn in a package. That’s right, no silk, no husk, and it had been preserved and vacuum packed. Bleck. (Or so I assume… I’ve never tried it.) Around the end of June, when my cousin was talking about his 140 ears that he just picked from his garden, I was green with envy. I started looking everywhere for fresh corn and much to my dismay, found nothing. Finally, during a World Cup game, I pleaded my case to a local and discovered that I would not be able to find fresh corn. Hubby and I were both devastated.
But then came the beginning of August, and as I was wandering through the grocery store in the city center that has a bit more selection than the one near our apartment, I spotted gold. That’s right, golden kernels of sweet, fresh, corn on the cob! There were only 4 ears, so I grabbed them all. Hubby and I feasted that night. Since then, my local grocery store has started carrying the fresh corn too. I’ve never seen it still in the husk, but that’s okay, I still get fresh corn. I know it wouldn’t last for too terribly long, and the season is mostly over, so I grab it every time I see it. And we haven’t gotten sick of it yet!
It was only when I realized that the corn wasn’t going to disappear immediately that I was willing to do something other than leave it on the cob. I remembered the smooth, gorgeous color of the corn for this recipe, complete with bacon flecks. Have I discussed our love for bacon? (Bacon is yummy, enough said.) I knew I wouldn’t be willing to part with six whole ears, so I halved the recipe. The picture is what convinced me to make the recipe. And well, I’m not going to waste corn that way again. If I want to impart a bacon flavor to my corn, I’ll wrap it in bacon, then in foil, then bake or grill it for a while. (Hey, that does sound good. Maybe I’ll try that if I find corn next week…) Without further ado, the recipe.
Garlic and sweet onions
Skillet Creamed Corn
from the all-new ultimate Southern Living Cookbook (also available here)
6 bacon slices
1/2 Vidalia onion, finely chopped
1 garlic clove, finely chopped
3 cups fresh corn kernels (about 6 ears)
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups half-and-half
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 tablespoon butter or margarine
1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil
Garnish: fresh basil sprigs
Sautéed corn, ready for it's gravy bath.
Cook bacon in a large skillet until crisp; remove bacon, and drain on paper towels, reserving 2 tablespoons drippings in skillet. Crumble bacon, and set aside.
Sauté onion and garlic in hot drippings 5 minutes or until tender. Stir in corn; cook 5 to 7 minutes or until golden. Remove from heat.
Cook flour in a large clean skillet over medium heat, stirring occasionally, about 5 minutes or until golden. Gradually whisk in half-and-half until smooth. Add corn mixture, salt, and pepper; cook 5 minutes or until thickened. Remove from heat; stir in butter and basil. Sprinkle each serving with bacon, and garnish, if desired.
There was nothing creamed about my corn. It was sautéed corn in gravy. Lumpy gravy at that. I had a lot of trouble incorporating the half and half into the flour without lumps. I found the recipe to call for way too much flour, so my gravy was a bit gluey. We were not impressed. I think this recipe can be salvaged though. It seems like a complete waste to toast the flour… I’m not certain it added enough depth of flavor to be warranted. If I dare try creamed corn again, I’ll make a flour-half and half slurry and add that to the skillet with the corn rather than dirtying up a new pan (Hey, I think about these things after going for two years without a dishwasher.) I did really like the addition of basil, which is what saved this recipe.
Skillet Creamed Corn with Parmesan Chicken Paillards (I ran out of time to make something green since these two dishes take the exact same amount of time to make)
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