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Corn on toast: spicy, buttery goodness

Corn on toast. Photo: Sala Kannan  

My all time favourite restaurant dish is spicy corn on toast. If a restaurant serves it, you can be sure that I will order it.

I love everything about this dish – the creamy white sauce laced with chillies and kasoori methi, fresh corn with a pop of sweetness, and golden toasted bread slathered in butter.

After years of craving restaurant style corn on toast, I decided it’s finally time to get in the kitchen and make my own homemade version. As I was testing different recipes for this dish, I tried to recall all the flavours in the corn on toast from my favourite restaurant. The flavours that really made it memorable for me were the sautéed tomatoes, the earthiness of kasoori methi and the punch of chillies, so I incorporated all these elements into my test recipes.

This recipe comes very close to the one in my memory and I’m thrilled to share it with you. Fresh corn on the cob works best, but if you can’t find it, use tinned kernel corn instead.

Strain the corn and measure out 1.5 cups to use in this recipe. But keep in mind that tinned corn will be sweeter than fresh corn.

The base for this dish is the white sauce, also called béchamel, and is one of the “mother sauces” of French cooking. In a traditional béchamel sauce, a chef will heat butter, stir in some maida and cook it until it turns golden, and then stream in milk, to create a thick creamy sauce. This method is slightly tricky because the sauce can clump up if you are not careful.

I use an easier method: I simply whisk together the maida and milk ahead of time, making sure there are no lumps. Then I pour it into the pot, and it will thicken up as it heats. My go-to white sauce formula is 1:1:1. That is, 1 tablespoon butter, 1 tablespoon maida, 1 cup milk. But for this sauce, I like it a little richer, so I used 2 tablespoons of butter.

Spicy Corn on Toast ( Serves 2)

2 large or 3 small corn cobs

1 cup milk

1 tbsp maida

2 tbsp butter

1 onion, finely chopped

1 green chilli, finely chopped 

3 cloves garlic, finely chopped

1 tomato, chopped

1/4 tsp chilli powder

1/4 cup grated cheese

1 tbsp kasoori methi

1/4 tsp garam masala (optional) 

2 slices of bread

Chopped coriander for garnish

Method

1. Remove the husk and silk from the corn cobs. Cut off the tip. Stand the corn cob on the cut end. Hold on to the stalk end. Using a sharp knife, carefully slice away the corn kernels. Then break up and separate the cut kernels. You should have about 1 1/2 cups of corn kernels. Set this aside.

2. In a bowl, whisk together the milk and maida so that there are no lumps. If lumps form, use your fingers and break them up. Set aside.

3. Heat the butter in a medium pan. Add chopped onion and chilli. Cook on medium heat until the onion is translucent. Then add chopped garlic and stir until it’s fragrant, about 1 minute. Add tomato and chilli powder. Cook until the tomato is soft, about 2 minutes.

4. Add the corn kernels to the pan, along with some salt and 1 cup water. Bring to a boil. Then reduce heat and simmer until the corn is almost cooked. At this point, most of the water should have evaporated. If it hasn’t, increase the heat to high and let it boil away.

5. Now pour in the milk and maida mixture. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer until the sauce thickens, about 3 minutes. Stir in grated cheese 2 tablespoons at a time. Let the cheese completely melt before stirring in more.

6. Now stir in kasoori methi and garam masala, if using. Cook for 30 seconds. Turn off the heat. The corn should have gravy-like consistency. If it is too thick, stir in a few tablespoons of milk.

7. While the corn is cooking, toast the bread. Slather a little butter on both sides of the bread. Place it on a skillet on medium heat. Cook, flipping once, until both sides are golden.

8. To serve, place one slice of toasted bread on a plate. Spoon half the corn mixture on top. Garnish with chopped coriander.

Food blogger and enthusiastic traveller, Sala Kannan combines her passions for cooking, culture and photography in one delectable blog: >www.veggiebelly.com


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Printable version | Jun 12, 2021 8:02:56 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/features/metroplus/Food/restaurant-style-corn-on-toast-recipe-veggie-belly-sala-kannan/article6390552.ece

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