I have been singing the praises of Mexican grilled corn on the cob (elote) to Keith since the day we met. I couldn’t believe he had never tried it. Even in the midwest, we had not come up with the simple idea of cheese on corn. It is pure genius. In the time we have known each other, Keith and I have managed to sample a few varieties here in New York. My favorite is still at La Esquina in Soho. However, I am not above partaking in a cob at a local street fair; it hits the spot on a warm summer day and it costs quite a bit less.
So we were planning our Memorial Day cookout, and we thought that it was time for Keith to try his hand at this beloved corn of mine. First, we looked all over town for cotija cheese. No luck. But we would not be deterred. After careful consideration, we settled on parmesan, as it had the same tangy bite and texture as the cotija. Keith created a delicious cilantro butter base, and we coated the corn in parmesan.
Now I, being the snotty New Yorker that I am, opted for a nice chunk of good Italian parmesan and insisted that we freshly grate it (as pictured below).
What we later realized (through some trial and error) is that our corn tastes better with that parmesan cheese in the green canister that may be in your refrigerator right now. Somehow this “shaky cheese” (as Keith’s kids refer to it) provides the most delectable, sweet yet salty bite that makes this corn so special. Even a jaded New Yorker like me will admit when she is wrong.Print
A Mexican inspired grilled corn on the cob
- 6 ears of corn
- 1/4 C. butter, softened
- 1 tbsp fresh cilantro, chopped
- Kosher salt
- Black pepper
- 1/2 C. Grated Parmesan cheese
- Prepare the corn: my method is to cut the stem off the end of the corn and then peel only the loose husk away. You will have corn with husk and corn silk still attached.
- Place a damp tea towel in bottom of microwave and place corn on top of towel.
- Cook corn 3 minutes for every 2 ears of corn, so in this recipe you would cook the corn for 9 minutes.
- Carefully remove corn from microwave with tongs and remove husk and silk and let cool.
- With grill on medium high heat, place ears of corn on grill and turn occasionally until corn is slightly toasted.
- While corn is grilling, mix together the cilantro with the butter and set aside at room temperature.
- When corn is done, coat with the cilantro butter and roll in Parmesan cheese.
- Salt and pepper to taste