Georgia Grown Elote (Mexican Street Corn)
This recipe lets Georgia’s summer sweet corn shine! Mexican Street Corn, or Elote, is a grilled treat slathered with mayonnaise to create a burnished, caramelized exterior, and it can be topped with cotija cheese or queso fresco, chili powder, and lime juice, but feel free to add your favorite hot sauce or substitute feta or parmesan for the Mexican cheese. Make sure to leave the woody stem on the corn when you’re ready to shuck so you can make use of the built in “handle”. To step it up a notch, we’ve included a recipe for cilantro-lime crema to top it all off with no blender required, but it is totally optional.
- 4 whole ears yellow corn, unshucked
- 2 teaspoons mayonnaise
- 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- ¼ teaspoon smoked paprika
- ¼ teaspoon chili powder
- ¼ teaspoon salt
For the Garnish
- 2 tablespoons loosely packed cilantro leaves
- 1/2 lime, cut into 4 wedges
- 1/3 cup crumbled queso fresco
For the cilantro-lime crema (optional):
- 3 tablespoons sour cream
- 3 tablespoons mayonnaise
- 2 teaspoons fresh-squeezed lime juice
- 1-2 tablespoons finely chopped cilantro
- Combine cayenne, chili powder, smoked paprika and salt in a small bowl and set aside.
- To make the cilantro-lime crema (optional):
In a small bowl, stir together sour cream, 3 tablespoons mayonnaise, and lime juice. Season with salt and pepper. Hold a sharp chef’s knife horizontally with your index finger pressing down on the flat part of the blade, and use it to crush cilantro by dragging the knife toward you until the juices are released. Continue to chop and crush until it becomes a paste. Add crushed cilantro to sour cream and mayonnaise mixture and set aside.
- Prepare a charcoal grill to a medium high heat, or preheat a gas grill.
- Shuck corn, leaving the tough woody stem to serve as a “handle” on the end of each ear. Brush each ear with mayonnaise, including the “handle” and season with salt. Grill corn, turning frequently, about 10 minutes until fully cooked and charred in places.
- Remove corn from heat and season each ear with chili powder mixture, leaving some to sprinkle over at the end if desired.
- Transfer corn to a serving dish. Spoon crema, if using, evenly over the top of each ear. Sprinkle with crumbled queso fresco, sprinkle with more chili powder mixture, garnish with cilantro leaves, and serve with lime wedges.