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From Hot Peppers to Sweet Corn

Help me figure out how to prepare what's abundant—this time, sweet corn.

A few weeks ago I asked Patch readers for inspiration on how to use an over-abundance of jalapenos from our container garden.

Now I know where to go for cooking advice!

Here and among our Patch friends in Connecticut, I received a bumper crop of fantastic ideas, everything from mango red pepper salad recipe to homemade hot sauce ideas — even a tip for making the perfect flavored vodka for what promises to be an insanely good bloody mary.

I asked to get out of my fresh salsa rut and now I have more ideas than time, a great problem to have. (As soon as I see September hovering in the distance all I want to do is swim, not cook. I curse all really hot days until I spy the school supply lists waiting on the side of the fridge or start thinking about bus schedules. Then all I want to do is soak up the sunshine.)

Either way, having the peppers within arm's reach means incorporating jalapenos into so many more dishes. 

Yesterday I chopped one into leftover salt potatoes for a quick breakfast hash. 

Saute a small onion in a little olive oil and pat of butter and then add potatoes, cubed, and some cherry tomatoes. Cook until potatoes are nicely browned and heated through. Toss in jalapeno toward the end to taste. Never foresake leftover potatoes — I always think they are better the second time around anyway.

I'm also sharing a photo of my homemade salsa. I couldn't help myself. So easy to make. I'll get it together soon for more complicated things.

If you've never made your own salsa, definitely try. I throw in whatever I have around — cherry tomatoes, roma, beefsteak, peaches, corn, beans, whatever. (Try incorporating fresh fava beans, amazing.) I just like to retain the basic trinity of crunchy raw onion, hot pepper and cilantro as a base. Don't worry about perfection, just a great foil for a salty tortilla chip.

This week, let's talk sweet corn.

It's not going to be around forever, so we better get cooking — and freezing.

Lisa Buchman, our Bedford-Katonah Patch editor, shared a lovely black bean, sweet corn and avocado salad with me the other night. I'm going to ask her to share the receipe in the comments on Monday. And I know there are a a zillion other recipes out there.

Do you have the best one?

Anything to suggest besides mass freezing, both on and off the cob?

Let's go beyond the basics this summer. I swear I will really cook this week if you will. Pinky promise.

I want to try homemade arepa de choclo — Columbian sweet corn fritters — while dreaming of the queso fresco I'll put on top. (Where to buy the best?)

Maybe I'll also press my Chilean-by-marriage friend into service for a verson of her pastel de choclo.

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