According to Pulitzer Prize-winning food writer Julia Moskin, “Corn is the One True Vegetable of American summer.”
And though I sound like a broken record talking about trying to cook all of the summer things before it stops being summer (an unlikely prospect here in L.A.), I do have to make some time for corn here. I already told you about my skillet chicken breasts with peppers, corn, and scallions, and that’s basically how I’ve been doing corn all summer: cut straight off the cob (see that post for the technique involving a bowl inside a bowl) and cooking it in a skillet with aromatics and some kind of fat (butter, olive oil, bacon fat, or in that post, chicken fat).
But this time around I wanted a peppy appetizer that featured corn in its purest form. Enter Julia Moskin’s corn fritter recipe.
This is a dangerous corn fritter recipe in that the corn is barely held together by the flour and wet ingredients. You’ve got some cornmeal, some flour, some spices, a little milk (I used buttermilk), and an egg, and then tons of fresh, sweet summer corn.
When they hit the skillet, I’ve got to admit I started to doubt the recipe. It looked like wet corn sizzling in a skillet, not something that was going to come together into an incredible fritter. But after a few minutes, I flipped them over and…
…they were golden, crispy and almost impossible not to eat straight out of the skillet.
Imagine crispy cornmeal pancakes brimming with fresh corn kernels and you’ll get the idea. And though I made a whole stink about this being the last taste of summer, blah blah blah, you COULD make this with frozen corn anytime of the year. Though I do think, unlike frozen peas, frozen corn doesn’t taste as good as fresh corn at the height of summer. So if you see those fat cobs of corn in their husks at the supermarket, grab a few and make these fritters. Please pay for them first.
Julia Moskin’s Corn Fritters
- 3 ears sweet yellow corn husked, silks removed, and then cut off the cob into a bowl Best to do this on a little bowl set upside-down in a larger bowl to catch all of the kernels.
- 1/3 cup milk or buttermilk
- 1 large egg
- 1 tsp sugar
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp salt, plus more for sprinkling
- Pinch cayenne pepper
- 1/2 tsp smoked paprika This is my own addition.
- 1/4 cup cornmeal
- 1/4 cup flour
- Vegetable oil, for cooking
- Maple syrup, for serving I skipped this but sounds great.
Mix the corn with the milk, egg, sugar, baking powder, salt, cayenne, and smoked paprika. Mix in the cornmeal and flour and let rest for ten minutes.
In a cast iron skillet, heat a few tablespoons of vegetable oil over medium-high heat. Drop heaping tablespoons of the batter into the hot fat, let cook for a few minutes until golden brown, then flip and finish on the other side.
Remove cooked fritters to a tray, pat dry with paper towels, sprinkle with salt, and if not eating right away, keep warm in a 200 degree oven.
Julia Moskin’s Caramelized Corn with Fresh Mint (The Wednesday Chef)
Roasted Corn Cobs with Serrano Mint Sauce (A Brown Table)