Corn on the cob with basil butter, parmesan cheese and chipotle chile

Basil is growing like a weed in the palatial gardens of Los Chileros Manor. Our head gardener can barely keep up with it, but of course, the rest of the staff chip in to help. Needs must.

What? You don’t believe we have a head gardener let alone a staff of hundreds? Perhaps we exaggerate just a tad…But the point is that basil is going great guns, so water it, snip it, and get cooking. We like to look ahead to those basil-less days of Autumn and winter and make some pesto (freezes like a dream) and basil butter.

Basil butter couldn’t be simpler to make and it too freezes like a pro. It’s just the thing to pull out of the freezer on a cold winter’s day. Defrost, then spread on a crusty baguette and you’ll feel like you’re in the south of France, without the hassle of airport security.

But don’t freeze it all because summer isn’t gone yet. It’s perfect slathered on an ear of corn, then topped with some grated parmesan cheese and a healthy sprinkle of chipotle chile powder. Couldn’t be easier and everyone will think you’re a Michelin starred chef. Well, maybe not that crab apple of a neighbor but you’re never going to please her, are you?

 Corn on the cob with basil butter, parmesan cheese and chipotle chile

1 stick unsalted butter, cut into chunks

heaping cup of basil leaves

salt

Corn

To garnish:

Parmesan cheese

Chipotle chile powder

In the small bowl of food processor, place the basil leaves and butter. Blitz until the basil is chopped and nicely mixed with the butter. Taste and add salt as needed. Place in a bowl and keep refrigerated until ready to use.

Boil or microwave your corn. Microwaving is super easy – simply place an unshucked ear in the microwave and cook for 3 minutes. To serve, peel the corn, spread on some of the basil butter, sprinkle with the grated parmesan cheese and a healthy sprinkle of the chipotle chile powder.

Summer Lovin’

Corn – specifically corn-on-the-cob – is one of summer’s greatest gifts. Only winning the lottery or finding my keys would make me happier than an ear of corn. I met a farmer who told me he loves the corn he grows so much that he eats it raw.

Okay, so maybe I don’t love it that much.

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But then he went on to say that he microwaves his corn (when he’s not chowing down on an ear in the fields). Four minutes per ear and the husk and silks slide off effortlessly.

Yeah, sure.

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So I tried it. And guess what? He’s right. You pop the corn (I’d do a max of two ears at a time) in the microwave as is – don’t peel it or anything. Set the timer for 4 minutes for one ear or 8 for two. Then stand back and watch that puppy twirl around.

Or better yet, make a Chile Butter to go with your corn.

Mix some softened butter (I figure about 1 tablespoon per ear) with some chile powder. I use Chile Molido (press here for the hot version!) but you can go for something hotter if you like. I add about ¼- ½ tsp for 4 tablespoons of butter. By the time you’ve finished mixing it your corn should be ready.

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Take it out of the microwave and slice off the bottom (stem end). Warning: it’s hot. Very hot. Then carefully pull off the husks and silks – they’ll slide off easily. It’s a piece of cake (or piece of corn), I promise.

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Slather on some chile butter and you’re good to go. Quick, easy and you’ve got a whole lot of summer lovin’.