One of the states we visited this fall in our travels west was Colorado. We spent time in Denver, then explored Pueblo and the area around Durango. Besides being absolutely beautiful, it has a rich history, and a lot of yummy food!
The Chile & Frijoles Festival was going on the weekend we were in Pueblo.
Huge bags of green chilies were carried over by forklifts to giant roasters. Workers turned a device that looked like a giant raffle wheel while flames roasted the chilies. What an aroma! People stood in line to buy large bags of the charred chilies which they would take home to divide up and freeze for use throughout the year.
Of course there were vendors selling food as well! I was intrigued by the "Corn in a Cup". It reminded me of the humita, a filling for Argentine empanadas, that Allison's dear friend had taught me how to make.
Later, when we were in Mesa Verde National Park, I saw how important corn was to the history of the area. We took a guided tour of one of the cliff dwellings and the park ranger pointed out how floor was decorated with imprints of corn cobs.
Roy has always loved creamed corn, so I got the idea of combining corn and green chilies together to create a Tex Mex side dish which is slightly spicy, salty, and sweet. I have to tell you that it tastes amazing served with shrimp or chicken that has been rubbed with my favorite seasoning mix, and then grilled. It could also become a south-of-the-border chowder with a bit more broth and the addition of some cooked & cubed red skinned potatoes.
Ingredients for Four Servings:
2 ears of fresh corn or 2 cups frozen corn kernels
1 medium tomato
1/4 cup diced yellow onion
1/4 cup diced poblano pepper, seeds and membranes discarded
2 tablespoons olive or vegetable oil
3/4 cup chicken or vegetable broth
1/2 cup table cream
1/2 cup Monterey pepper jack cheese
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon Spanish smoked paprika
1/4 teaspoon oregano
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/8 teaspoon salt
Husk the corn and remove the silk strands. Hold the cobs straight up and down, and use a sharp knife to remove the kernels. Set aside.
Place the cooking oil and diced tomato, pepper, and onion in a skillet. Over medium heat, saute until vegetables are tender soft but not brown. This will take about five minutes. Then add the broth and corn. Let the mixture simmer for about seven minutes.
Take the skillet off the heat and add the cream along with the Parmesan and Monterey Jack cheeses. Gently stir to combine. If necessary, return to low heat to allow it to come to a warmer temperature, but don't let the dish come to a boil - or it will curdle.
Serve as a side to accompany Tex Mex food and enjoy!