One of the first things I learned when I started cooking is that if it grows together, it will probably taste good together. This is the essence of seasonal cuisine and it is in the summertime that we should take full advantage of the available produce.
I made this dish three years ago for friends when we vacationed at a beach house in Delaware. It was the responsibility of each couple to cook dinner for the group on one of the nights. When it was our turn, I found a small farmers market where they had bi-color corn right next to perfectly ripened donut peaches. Both are wonderfully sweet but in their own unique way so I put them together. It was such a hit that night that I now make it several times a summer. I have cooked this dish at catering events, as part of tasting menus, for family and friends, or just to bring to barbecues. It is very versatile and works well in family-style portions, as an appetizer, or a component in a composed entree.
This dish is exceptionally simple with very few ingredients so grab the best tasting corn and peaches for the best results.
Corn and Peaches – Serves 8 as a side
8 ears sweet corn
3 ripe peaches
1/2 jalapeño pepper
3 limes, juice and zest
3 tbsp olive oil
3 tbsp butter
2 tbsp kosher salt
grated Pecorino or Parmesan cheese optional
– Remove the kernels from the corn by carefully running a sharp knife down the length of the cob
– Remove the pit from the peach and dice the peach into pieces slightly bigger than the corn kernel
– Deseed a jalapeño pepper and dice to the size of a corn kernel. Start with just half a pepper and adjust to preferred spiciness
– Using a Microplane or a fine grater, zest the limes and squeeze the juice reserving both separately
– Heat up a large pan. You do not want to overcrowd the pan so all the ingredients may have to be split into two or three batches to be cooked separately. When pan is hot, add oil, butter and corn. Saute until the corn is cooked with a few kernels starting to brown
– Add peaches and jalapeño and cook until everything is cooked through
– Season with salt and reserve in a big bowl
– Wipe off pan and repeating the cooking steps until all the batches are cooked
– Add the lime juice and toss the corn to combine. The corn is ready to serve
– Once on the plate, garnish with lime zest and grated cheese