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One of my favorite summertime traditions is watching my aunt eat her corn off the cob kernel by kernel. (Do you know anyone that eats their corn one kernel at a time?) I always feel like I'm witnessing a sacred ritual in which she savors every last golden nugget. And who can blame her?
My family spends summers at the Jersey shore eating sweet corn from Big Ed's farmstand in Lavallette, steamed and buttered. We all take turns husking it on the back patio, get yelled at by "Quality Control" for neglecting a few silk strands, and sometimes even forget about it in a giant lobster pot on the stove, overwhelmed by a smorgasbord of hot dogs, hamburgers, ribs, potato salad, and slaws.
My guess is that if we prepared our corn elote-style, the chances of forgetting about it in the giant lobster pot on the stove would be zero to none.
Elote is a popular street food in Mexico and Central America. The corn is grilled until slightly charred, then coated with Cotija cheese, crema, mayonnaise, spices, and cilantro. It's meant to be portable, often served on a stick. According to this recipe from I Wash You Dry, you'll probably never want to eat naked corn on the cob again. Add this to your next cookout spread and challenge your guests to eat it kernel by kernel. I don't even think my aunt could do that.
→ Get the Recipe: Mexican Grilled Corn from I Wash You Dry