Corn bought in the Midwest or Southern States is the best to be had: fresh from the sun-drenched fields, and tooth-achingly sweet. It bears no resemblance to its poor relations flown across the world to languish in plastic, stripped of their protective husks, on our supermarket shelves.
My American grandmother was a home economist and food writer, and a meticulous and impressive home cook. She kept records of her favourite family and entertaining recipes, pasting clippings neatly onto cards, or noting them down in elegant script. Serendipity intervened as I was helping clear out the family home in Ohio after the death of my grandfather, and I came across her collection. Corn features widely and this is a true American classic.
I’ve adapted the recipe, providing UK measures. Use the freshest corn cobs you can find, preferably with their husks intact. I’ve omitted the flour, as I don’t think it is necessary. Serve with plain roast chicken, or as part of a Sunday brunch fry up.
- 7-8 ears of corn
- 85g unsalted butter
- 1 tbsp sugar
- 2 tsp sea salt
- 120ml whole milk
- 120ml double cream
- pepper and nutmeg, to taste
Cut the corn from the cob by holding it on a board vertically and slashing down through kernels with a small sharp knife, then scrape the cob with the back of the knife to extract all the milk.
Melt the butter in a frying pan, stir in the corn. Add the sugar, salt and milk. Cover and cook slowly for about 10 minutes.
Stir in the cream and simmer for a further couple of minutes. Sprinkle generously with coarsely ground pepper and nutmeg before serving.
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