Maybe it’s the thought of warm weather as our family prepares to head to Arizona for Spring Training, or maybe it’s the fact that I haven’t started packing yet and needed another excuse to procrastinate, but yesterday I decided that I MUST have Mexican Street Corn NOW. Obviously it’s February and I’m in Texas, far from fresh corn season, but dang it, I was determined to eat some charred corn with spices and fresh lime.
The best thing to do when you’re craving out-of-season produce is to head to the freezer section. Frozen vegetables are picked at the height of freshness and flash-frozen.
The only problem with cooking with frozen veggies is sometimes they can get a little soggy when they hit the pan, especially if they are covered in tiny ice crystals. To get your frozen corn perfectly charred, make sure to thaw and then dry it before cooking. ***Updated: No need to go through the thawing and drying steps. This recipe works great with frozen corn straight out of the bag. Woohoo!*** Once it’s cooking, stir the corn as little as possible. Too much stirring means not enough time to develop that golden brown char you’re going for.
Now that I’ve satisfied that Mexican Street Corn craving, I guess I should go pack. Unless…I think I just got a hankering for tacos…be right back.
- 16 oz bag frozen sweet corn (*feel free to substitute fresh corn in the summer!)
- 2 Tbsp. olive oil
- ¼ tsp. salt
- 1 cup chopped fresh cilantro (plus more for garnish)
- ½ cup finely sliced green onions (green parts only)
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- ½ tsp. chili powder
- 1 tsp. ground cumin
- Juice of 1 lime (plus wedges for serving)
- ½ cup cotija cheese, finely crumbled (use feta cheese if you can't find cotija)
- 2 Tbsp. mayonnaise
- 1 Jalapeno, diced (optional)
- Add oil to a cast iron skillet and heat over medium-high heat. Add corn, use a large spoon or spatula to push it into a single layer. (Depending on your pan, you might have to cook the corn in batches.) Let corn cook for at least 3 minutes before stirring (too much stirring and your corn will not char correctly).
- Stir the corn and push it back into a single layer. Cook for 3 more minutes, then repeat. Continue until corn is sufficiently charred (about 10-12 minutes total).
- In a large bowl, combine corn and all other ingredients. Stir and serve with lime wedges and fresh cilantro.