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RECIPE: Roasted Chilli Corn


It’s hard, for someone who devotes as much time to sweating over a hot barbecue as I do, to find time to have a favourite dish.

Frankly, I love them all. There is one, however…it’s my roasted chilli corn, which first appeared in Heat & Smoke, the first one, all those (6!) years ago. And it has lost none of its magic. This year, Victorian corn ? the corn that makes this dish really special ? has been slow to appear, for a variety of weather-related reasons. But finally, it’s here, and it’s time?

The dish consists of cobs of perfect corn, their husks pulled back to form perfect handles, placed on a very hot grill and roasted ? lid down, of course, with the husks fetchingly peeking out from under the hood. Turn the cobs every few minutes simply by lifting the lid and twisting the husks/handles. You are looking for the corn to darken as the sugars caramelize, and for the occasional kernel to blacken, which adds glorious smoky, barbecued tang.

But remember: NEVER wrap corn in foil ? that’s just silly. And NEVER soak it in water, either, as that simply steams it. This way is far better. The cobs are ready to come off the heat after about 8 minutes or when they are evenly roasted. And now, the magic happens.

The next step is to brush the cobs with chipotle mayo which is made by stirring pureed chipotle peppers in adobe (widely available, tinned, from food outlets) into Best Foods mayo, or similar. Do this to taste, but start with a couple of tsps of chipotle puree to a cup of mayo. Now, complete the magic by sprinkling finely grated parmesan over the cobs, and eat.

Be amazed?