In the past month I have heard from many of my Phoenix friends. Funny how it happens like that; you go months (and in some cases more than a year) not hearing from people then all of a sudden I am getting phone calls, texts, Facebook messages, and visits from friends there. It has been fun hearing from all of them and catching up on all of the “gossip”. We lived there for ten years- many friendships were made and will not be forgotten. This all got me to thinking of all that I learned about food while I was there. Living there my eyes had been opened to the abundance of Mexican food that was available. As Brian and I met up with one of our Phoenix friends for a great meal here in Seattle at a place that is known for its varieties of fresh oysters….I was longing for tacos. As we played tourist last weekend with another friend who was visiting and we went out for a fantastic sushi dinner…I was craving chips and guacamole. What was going on here? Can it be that the food I use to eat in Phoenix regularly was like one of my old friend trying to come and visit with me? I told Brian then later that evening that I realized I was missing all of my Phoenix friends, and the great Mexican food we had available to us.
In all of this Brian came home with some fresh corn form a late harvest at the famers market. I looked at him and I could tell that he was thinking the same thing that I was – Elotes! What is this you may ask? It is technically the Mexican word for corn on the cob, but it is what you pair it with that makes it spectacular. It is not uncommon to see it with a coating of mayo, rolled in queso fresco, sprinkled with New Mexican chili powder, and served with lime wedges & hot sauce…among many other ingredients as well. I know it may sound weird to some but you just have to give it a try. I know I just had to make them. As were eating them Brian said to me, “It is amazing how these ingredients that don’t seem to go together work so well.” Well? I may have to differ; to me all these ingredients that don’t seem to work together work into a distinctive and remarkable taste.
My taste buds miraculously went back to Phoenix to visit. They missed the elotes, as much as I have been missing my friends. It was the perfect solution. For now I will stick to the texting, emailing, and Facebooking to catch up with all of them. But my kitchen will be getting a work out for the food. Too bad the season for fresh sweet corn is just about ended. I will have to see what other flavors I long for from my past life in Phoenix.
Elotes (Mexican Corn on the Cob)
Fresh Corn on the Cob (peeled and washed)
Queso Fresco, crumbled
New Mexican Chili Powder
First, peel and clean your corn well. Place a large pot of water on to boil (large enough to submerge your corn cobs). When water on boiling place in your cobs and cook about 5 minutes. I usually judge it by when the corn starts to change color, than I remove it from the water.
Next, when cool enough to handle smear mayo over the cobs. Then, sprinkle or roll them in the queso fresco. I then dust it lightly with the New Mexican chili powder. And place it on a platter.
Finally, to serve place the platter of corn on your table with the lime wedges and hot sauce. You will need napkins – lots of them, but you will enjoy it tremendously.
**Notes – Never peel your corn too long before you are ready to cook it. The husks actually insulate it and keep it fresh and sweet.
*** I like to use Cholula Hot sauce, but you can use your own personal preference here.
****I have seen this also done with Sour Cream to replace the mayo, but you are the decider on that one.