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Recipe #4: Corn Curry - Or, What To Do With Leftover Corn! ;-)

Posted Jul 28 2007 12:00am

Tonight I'm going to making an Indian meal for my family (my mother, father, & sister) and my fiance, Erik. My mother & sister don't normally cook Indian food for their families, so it'll be something different for them to experience. My sister and mother have told me that they are excited to try the recipes that I've been raving about, and with a little help & encouragement, would like to reproduce the meal for themselves. Tonight's menu will be the Route 79 Masala Salmon recipe (in an earlier post, which can be found here ), along with 3 vegetable dishes -- the corn curry recipe I've posted below (made with farm-fresh "butter & sugar" corn!), a refreshing summer dish of marinated fennel & tomatos, & a Chinese-inspired spinach dish with garlic, sesame, & soy sauce.

For dessert, I'll be serving a mix of fresh red & black raspberries, gooseberries, & blueberries, and masala tea.

"My Sister's Favorite Corn Curry" (Makayee Noo Curry)

(Source: From the Suvir Saran's cookbook, "Indian Home Cooking: A Fresh Introduction to Indian Food, With More Than 150 Recipes." This dish is reminiscent of the Gujarati-style corn curries made/served in Bombay.)

Green Paste (Ingredients):
1 fresh hot green chile, stemmed and cut in half
½ teaspoon cumin seeds
A 2-inch piece fresh ginger, peeled and cut into large chunks
12 fresh or 16 frozen curry leaves, torn into pieces (optional)
¼ cup fresh cilantro sprigs (with tender stems only)
2 tablespoons water
1 cup milk
1 cup half-and-half

Corn Curry (Ingredients):

3 tablespoons canola oil
1 ½ teaspoons cumin seeds
1 teaspoon black mustard seeds (optional)
3 whole dried red chiles
¼ teaspoon turmeric
6 fresh or 10 frozen curry leaves, torn into pieces (optional)
1/8 teaspoon asafetida (optional)
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
¾ teaspoon salt, or to taste
4 cups fresh corn kernels (cut from about 6 ears) or frozen corn

Instructions: For the green paste, combine all of the ingredients in a small food processor and process to a paste. Set aside.

Combine the milk and half-and-half in a 2-cup measure or small bowl.

Combine the oil, cumin, and mustard seeds, if using, in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Cover if using mustard seeds (they pop and splatter) and cook until the cumin turns golden brown or you hear the mustard seeds crackle, 1 to 2 minutes.

Add the chiles, turmeric, and curry leaves and asafetida, if using, and stir. (Stand back if using curry leaves; they spit when they hit the oil.) Immediately add the green paste and turn the heat down to low. Then cook, stirring, 1 minute.

Add the flour and cook, stirring, 1 more minute, scraping the bottom of the pan to keep the flour from sticking. Gradually add the milk mixture, about 1 tablespoon at a time at first, to make a smooth paste. Start to add the milk more quickly, adding the final cup all at once. Stir in the salt and the corn, and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer, uncovered, until the corn is tender, about 4 minutes. Taste for salt and serve hot.

Yield: Serves 4.

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