Sunday, July 18, 2010

Grilled Corn on the Cob

I had no intention of blogging about humble old corn on the cob, until my husband's eye's popped open as he was eating his first ear. "You need to set up a little shop in New York and just sell this. Like the Soup Nazi. Only you'd be the Corn Lady."

I really don't want to be known as the Corn Lady, so instead, I took a picture of the one remaining ear and will share my secret with you. It's the marinade, and really fresh corn. That's it. Make extra - you will eat it, if not right way, then later, cold, from the fridge, or the next day, cut off the cob and mixed into your favorite pasta salad. It's that good!

Grilled Corn on the Cob
Serves ??

4 - 6 ears of corn, shucked (husks and silks removed)
1 teaspoon finely chopped fresh rosemary
pinch of black pepper
2 T. olive oil
2 T. white balsamic vinegar
1 clove of garlic, pressed
coarse sea salt (for later)

Combine the rosemary, pepper, olive oil, vinegar and garlic in a small bowl and whisk until mixed. Place corn in a large ziplock bag or large shallow platter and pour marinade over it. Let stand at room temperature for about 1 hour.

When ready to grill, place corn on heated grill over medium heat and turn with tongs every couple of minutes, until it's starting to char and kernels are turning bright yellow. You will cook the corn a total of 6 - 10 minutes, depending on how hot your grill is and how large your ears of corn are. If you have any extra marinade in the bag or on the platter, drizzle it over the corn about halfway through the cooking time.

Remove the corn from the grill and place on a platter. Sprinkle with coarse sea salt and serve. No butter required.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Grilled Halibut with Artichoke Caponata

If you believe there's nothing better than a piece of grilled fish with a cool vegetable relish on a hot summer night, I'm with you. Here's a great one to try: Grilled Halibut with Artichoke Caponata.

Caponata, an Italian cooked vegetable salad, typically includes eggplant, celery, capers and vinegar, often along with tomato, pine nuts and raisins, in a sweet and sour dressing. Chef Michael White's recipe, which I found in Food & Wine, uses artichoke hearts in place of the eggplant with delicious results. The original recipe called for mahimahi, which isn't readily available in these parts. I chose halibut, and it stood up very well on the grill and with the relish. Beware: this relish is vinegary (my mouth is watering recalling it), but in a delicious sweet/sour way. I made a few other changes to the recipe to suit my tastes (and available pantry items) - enjoy!

Grilled Halibut with Artichoke Caponata
Based on a recipe by Michael White
Serves 6

2 T. extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for rubbing fish
4 tender celery ribs,diced (1 cup)
1 onion, finely chopped
3 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1/2 cup prepared tomato sauce
1/2 cup dry white wine
1 small jar marinated artichoke hearts, drained and chopped
1/2 cup pitted green olives, chopped
1/4 cup pine nuts
3 tablespoons agave nectar)
2 tablespoons small capers, drained
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
3 tablespoons shredded basil or parsley
Six 6-ounce halibut fillets


In a large, deep skillet, heat 2 T. of olive oil
until shimmering. Add the celery, onion and garlic and cook
over moderate heat until just softened, 4 minutes. Add the
tomato sauce, wine, vinegar, artichokes, olives, pine nuts,
agave nectar and capers and season with salt and pepper. Simmer
until the vegetables are tender and the liquid is reduced, 8
minutes. Stir in the basil or parsley and let cool. (The relish can be made up to 3 days in advance and refrigerated until use.)

Light a grill or preheat a grill pan. Rub the fish with
olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Grill over
moderately high heat, turning once, until cooked through,
about 9 minutes. (I use a sturdy grill basket to make sure I don't lose the fish in the grill grates.) Transfer the fish to plates, top with the
caponata and serve.