Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Sweet Corn Granita

From carefully selecting each ear to shucking, prepping and consuming it, the entire process of eating sweet corn is a sentimental experience for me. It immediately transports me to the summers of my childhood. I can easily imagine the precise sound of the husk as it's torn away from the cob and recollect the feeling of the silky threads clinging to my fingers as I shucked ear after ear. Despite this undying passion, a steaming ear of corn has not sounded the least bit appetizing this summer due to the "hotter than Hades" temperatures we've been experiencing. To satisfy my corn craving while refreshing my wilted disposition, I decided to make a sweet corn granita, layered with vanilla pudding. Imagine the sweetness of summer corn, laced with cinnamon, orange, and vanilla. Mmm mmm mmm....... delightful. Creamy pudding plus sweet icy goodness equals one happy blogger.

3 ears of corn, steamed
1/3 C brown sugar simple syrup*
3 Tbsp almond milk
1/4 tsp vanilla
1/8 tsp cinnamon
prepared vanilla pudding
orange zest

*Brown sugar simple syrup:
Mix 1/2 C brown sugar with 1 C water and simmer until sugar is thoroughly dissolved. Cool before using.

After steaming the corn, cut all kernels off the cob and pulse in food processor. Place the pureed kernels in a sieve over a bowl and press through with a spatula to separate out the solids. 3 ears of corn should yield about 1 C of smooth corn puree. (This is a tedious but worthwhile step.) Combine simple syrup, vanilla, cinnamon and almond milk with the smooth corn puree and pour into a chilled glass container and place in freezer. Scrape the mixture every 20 minutes with a fork until there is no more liquid in the granita. Spoon granita over vanilla pudding and top with orange zest. Enjoy!

Monday, July 11, 2011

Stop and Eat the Couscous

The past two weeks have slipped by in a blur of travel, work, travel, work. I am only just now catching up with my life outside of the office. Somewhere between Boston and Seattle, I concocted this quirky little salad, which was a happy accident of what I could find in the kitchen. (My pantry has been neglected, along with my blog.) The melange of couscous, cherry tomatoes, black beans, green onions, cucumbers, and pineapple, was quite tasty and extremely refreshing. Packed in a mason jar, it traveled beautifully to the beach. I sat quietly and enjoyed my strange medley as I caught my breath and soaked up the solitude... if only for a minute. It's good to be home.