On Your Table: Corn pudding for Summer gatherings

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By Cathy Branciaroli, Food Correspondent, The Times

With July 4th coming up and all kinds of neighborhood gatherings associated with that, I have a suggestion. Whenever I go to one of our neighborhood summer gatherings, I make sure to bring my Indian corn pudding casserole. I always leave with an empty dish. You will too. It’s a crowd pleaser and in fact an easy to make dish that can be baked in advance and reheated. Now what’s so hard about that?

Summer gatherings are all about no fuss. It’s already grilling season now, so the major themes are side dishes. Someone else can cook the meat. Choosing a side dish has everything to do with your personal preferences. People don’t want to be slaving away at the stove just as everyone arrives. Vegetable dishes work very well. They are quick to prepare and mostly can be made in advance.

Rich fatty proteins like potato casseroles are a no-no for these occasions. Vegetable dishes help cleanse the palate do you don’t feel laden down after the third bite.

A riff on Mexican street food is corn salad. Just roast the corn, bath in olive oil and add lime juice. This cold salad can accommodate a variety of local vegetables such as onions, bell peppers, tomatoes, or zucchini. Seasoned with salt, pepper and cilantro you’ve got a good to go dish.

My favorite though is the corn casserole. It’s got great texture, sweet taste and stays moist so it will hold for a while you wait for the guests.

The cool thing about this casserole is that it’s sort of like a soufflé. You can prepare the ingredients ahead of time and then roast the corn. Just separate the eggs, beat the yolks and then beat the whites and fold them into the mix – voila.

 

Indian Corn Pudding

A great dish to take to a summer event. Can be made ahead and reheated.

Ingredients:

4 cups corn kernels, 3 cups processed or thawed if frozen

1 ½ cup milk

1 cup diced onion. 1 clove garlic

1 small can chilies

4 eggs, separated

¾ cup grated cheddar cheese

½ cup sour cream

¼ cup masa harina or flour

1 tsp sugar, salt and pepper

Preparation;

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray cooking spray into 9×13 inch casserole dish. In food processor, puree 3 cups of the corn.   Set aside. In a medium skillet, sauté onions and and salt.   Add garlic the end. Combine onion mix, chiles, pureed corn, salt, egg yolks, sour cream, masa harina and sugar. Separately beat egg whites till frothy.. Gently fold egg whites into mixture and add whole kernels. Bake until center is just set, around 40 minutes. Serve warm.

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