Peruvian Corn with Cumin Spiked Cheese

This blog post originally appeared on MaryPicchu, my Peru Travel Blog, and since, well, I’m in Peru, I thought you should come over here and see what I’m doing.

Then I think you should make this corn because it is out of the world delicious, and then you should have something else to eat because lord knows a girl can’t live on corn and cheese spread alone. Anything else you need me to decide for you? What is it, Thursday? Well then, I think you should go watch Parks and Rec, because it is the best (second best- Modern Family is the first best) show on TV.

Smothered in Formage Blanc, peppered with cumin, garlic, jalapeno, and other deleciousness. oh boy.

Peruvians are big fans of cheese. From what I’ve read it appears most rural homes make their own cheese, a simple mix of cow’s milk or goat’s milk heated and mixed with lime juice and pressed until left with a something like a paneer (Indian homade cheese). This staple is then turned into spreads for bread or corn, and sauces for chicken, potatoes, fritters, ect. The recipe notes from this Food and Wine recipe suggest that a dish like this wouldn’t be uncommon in Peruvian homes, man I hope so.

Instead of making my own cheese, I purchased some formage blanc and mixed in the ingredients to create a serious Latin inspired spread that was screamingly delicious on torn pieces of baguette (we almost skipped the corn and ate that for dinner)! I’ve already got a list of uses for the little bit leftover- stuffed in wontons and fried, spread for roasted chicken or beef sandwich, dip for roasted sweet potato fries, stuffed inside a potato mash then deep fried, and on and on.

I didn’t tweak this recipe much except for quantities. Hope you give it a shot while corn is in season!

Anise Scented Corn with Cumin Spiked Fresh Cheese

Recipe adapted from Food and Wine by Chef Emmanuel Piqueras, founding Chef of Andina

Serves 4

1 serrano chile — halved lengthwise and seeded and minced
1/3 lb Formage Blanc, at room temperature
1 Tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 Tablespoons fresh lime juice
1 Teaspoon ground cumin
2 garlic clove, minced
1 gallon water
2 teaspoons sugar
2 teaspoons anise seeds
4 ears of corn, shucked

In a large bowl, mix the formage blanc with olive oil, lime juice, cumin, garlic and minced serrano and season with a pinch of kosher salt. Set aside while the corn cooks and TRY not to eat it all when you inevitable dig bread, crackers, carrots, your finder into the bowl.
Bring the water to a boil over high heat in a large pot with the sugar, anise seeds and 2 teaspoons of salt. Add the corn and boil until tender, about 5 minutes. Serve the corn hot, slathered with the cumin formage blanc. mmmmmm.



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