Mexican-Style Grilled Corn

hoto courtesy Cooks Illustrated
Photo courtesy Cooks Illustrated

This recipe is one of the reasons my friends love me. Really. This recipe and my Macque Choux, another summertime corn favorite.

I originally found this in the September 2009 issue of Cook’s Illustrated, one of my favorite magazines. If you have considered getting a subscription (either print or online) I would highly recommend it. We made this recipe Sunday night for my parents and it was a big hit. It is based on the grilled corn they make on street carts in Mexico.

Mexican Street CornMexican-Style Grilled Corn

Serves 6
(Ha! That’s if everyone only has one ear. Figure two per person to avoid conflict)

Note: If you can find queso fresco or Cotija (available at Wegmans), use either in place of the Pecorino Romano.

INGREDIENTS

Vegetable oil for cooking grate
¼ cup regular or light mayonnaise
3 tablespoons sour cream
3 tablespoons minced fresh cilantro leaves
1 medium garlic clove , minced or pressed through garlic press (about 1 teaspoon)
¾ teaspoon chili powder, divided (¼ tsp, then ½ tsp)
¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional)
4 teaspoons juice from 1 lime
1 ounce Pecorino Romano cheese, grated (about ½ cup) or Cotija cheese (see note above)
4 teaspoons vegetable oil
½ teaspoon kosher salt or ¼ teaspoon table salt
6 large ears corn , husks and silk removed

HOW TO: Charcoal Grill

1. Light large chimney starter filled with charcoal (6 quarts, about 100 briquettes) and allow to burn until coals are fully ignited and partially covered with thin layer of ash, about 20 minutes. Arrange all coals in even layer over half of grill, leaving other half empty. Position cooking grate over coals, cover grill, and heat grate until hot, about 5 minutes; scrape grate clean with grill brush. Dip wad of paper towels in vegetable oil; holding wad with tongs, wipe cooking grate.

2. While grill is heating, combine mayonnaise, sour cream, cilantro, garlic, ¼ teaspoon chili powder, black pepper, cayenne (if using), lime juice, and cheese in a medium bowl; set aside. On a cookie baking sheet, combine oil, salt, and remaining ½ teaspoon chili powder; add corn and toss until coated evenly.

3. Grill corn over coals, turning occasionally, until lightly charred on all sides, 7 to 12 minutes total. Remove from grill and place on cookie baking sheet, pour mayonnaise mixture over corn and roll it around to cover. Serve immediately.

HOW TO: Gas Grill

1. Turn all grill burners to high and heat grill with lid down until very hot, about 15 minutes. Scrape grate clean with grill brush. Dip wad of paper towels in vegetable oil; holding wad with tongs, wipe cooking grate.

2. While grill is heating, combine mayonnaise, sour cream, cilantro, garlic, ¼ teaspoon chili powder, black pepper, cayenne (if using), lime juice, and cheese in a medium bowl; set aside. On a cookie baking sheet, combine oil, salt, and remaining ½ teaspoon chili powder; add corn and toss until coated evenly.

3. Leave burners on high and cook corn with lid down, turning corn occasionally, until lightly charred on all sides, 7 to 12 minutes total. Remove from grill and place on cookie baking sheet, pour mayonnaise mixture over corn and roll it around to cover. Serve immediately.

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6 COMMENTS

  1. My son made this and it was absolutely fantastic! And you didn’t have to try to butter the corn–it was just messy and that was that— and yum, yum, yum! I’m making it tonight!

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