Smoky Creamed Corn with Green Chiles

September 29, 2011

Confession: when I was little, my mother used to serve me creamed corn out of the can. And I liked it.

I didn’t love it like my sister did–she craved the stuff–but if Mama spooned it onto my plate, I would willingly consume it.

Then I grew up, and promptly forgot that creamed corn existed. I certainly never put it on a grocery list or plopped a few renegade cans in the Kroger cart. Maybe it’s because the only canned vegetable I ever buy at all is the occasional jar of artichoke hearts or crushed tomatoes, so it’s not like I’ve been hanging out in the canned veg aisle with the mushy peas and carrots.

Frozen vegetables? Sure, no problem. But canned? I don’t know. Something about canned vegetables reeks of desperation. Maybe I spent too many snowy winters trapped with Mama indoors, pillaging the pantry shelves for something vegetative and edible.  I do recall several occasions when we actually had to deign to open the fruit cocktail can–clear evidence of dire straits.*

Anyways, my point is: I’d forgotten about creamed corn. Nor did I miss it, not one little bit. But then the Wednesday food section of my newspaper printed this little recipe, along with the grim reminder that summer corn season is almost over, and suddenly, I needed to make creamed corn.

Not just any creamed corn, though–this creamed corn is zingy with chiles and has a lovely, rich, smoky flavor from the paprika.  It’s not a caloric gut-bomb, either, which my thighs appreciate.  There’s actually zero “cream” in it, although if you like a denser, creamier version, you can substitute cream for some of the milk and be just fine, I think.

I’m pouting a little, watching the bins of fresh corn start to dwindle at the supermarket, but I know I have a few weeks left of corn goodness. And heck, I can forget about creamed corn again until next summer…it’s not like I haven’t done it before.

Smoky Creamed Corn with Green Chiles

from The Denver Post

serves 4

1 teaspoon butter

1 4-ounce can green chiles (I used medium, but mild is fine for those with tender tongues)

1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika**

3 cups fresh corn kernels, divided (about 7 cobs)

1 1/4 cups low-fat milk

1 tablespoon cornstarch

1/4 teaspoon salt

freshly ground black pepper

In a medium saucepan over medium heat, warm the butter. Add the chiles and paprika and cook, stirring, for 3 minutes. Remove from the heat and set aside.

In a blender, place 2 cups of the corn, the milk, the cornstarch and the salt. Blend until smooth. Transfer the puree to the saucepan with the chiles and add the remaining 1 cup of corn. Cook on medium-high heat, stirring constantly, until the mixture thickens and comes to a simmer, about 10 minutes.

Season with salt and pepper to taste.

*What is up with the freaky, naked grapes and the neon cherries in fruit cocktail? What kid would eat those things? Eww.

**You can find smoked paprika in the spice section of your grocery store.

~ Have a happy weekend, readers! I am very excited, because my dear friend, who had to postpone our earlier scheduled visit because of that damned Irene–argh!–is flying out to spend a few autumn days with me.  Mother Nature is not going to mess with us this time.  At least that’s what I’m praying for. Wish us luck.

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

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