Most of the ingredients you need for Beth Dooley’s fresh corn and tomato bake recipe can be purchased at your local farmers market right now.
“It’s best with fresh corn, scraped right off the cob,” she said. “But if there are a few cooked ears left over from last night’s dinner, feel free to toss in those kernels along with any overripe or bruised tomatoes.”
Dooley suggests serving her fresh corn and tomato bake alongside grilled brats, steak, chicken or salmon.
“It’s great hot from the oven, as well as at room temperature,” she said. “You can make it a few hours ahead of time, though not the day before, it will lose its savor.”
For a simple dinner, she suggests adding extra cheese to the recipe and serve with a side salad and crusty bread.
“You’ve got a fine summer dinner in a wink,” she said.
Fresh Corn and Tomato Bake
Serves 4 to 6
5 to 6 cups fresh corn kernels (about 4 to 5 ears of corn)
2 cups cherry tomatoes, stemmed
2 leeks, trimmed, white parts only, cut into ½ moons
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
¼ cup chopped fresh parsley
2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
2 tablespoons chopped fresh thyme
¼ cup panko or fresh bread crumbs
¼ cup grated parmesan cheese
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, toss together the corn kernels, cherry tomatoes, leeks, parsley, basil, thyme and 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Turn into an oven, cover tightly with aluminum foil and bake until the tomatoes have split and the corn is very tender, about 45 minutes. Remove the foil, sprinkle the panko and grated cheese over the top. Drizzle with the remaining olive oil. Return to the oven and continue to bake until the top is brown and bubbly, about 10 more minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature.
Beth’s tips on cooking corn
On the Stove: Boil the corn in a big pot of salted water until the color of the kernels becomes more intense, about 4 to 5 minutes. Drain.
On the Grill: Peel back the husk (leaving it in tact) and remove the silk. Then, replace the husk and set the corn on the grill for about 8 to 10 minutes. (Keeping the corn in the husks prevents it from burning and drying out while it absorb the grill’s deep smoky flavor).
Save the cobs: Once you’ve enjoyed every kernel, toss the cobs into a pot and cover with water. Add a few herbs (bay leaf, fresh parsley) 1/2 onion and simmer for at least 30 minutes. Strain and use the stock for chowder and sauces, as you would chicken or vegetable stock. Once it’s cooled off, store the stock in the refrigerator in a covered container for up to three days or freeze.
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