Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Turning on the Heat

It's funny to read many of the posts from those of us who live in the South at this time of year as so many of them reference the heat. As we all know, many (if not all) homes had kitchens in separate buildings given the risk of fire and the heat. I'm sure Terry could tell us the entire history- I googled quickly and didn't find much. This concept is making a comeback with the Outdoor Living trend and I for one find it quite practical.

While our outdoor kitchen is not quite to the same level as the photo shown above, we do have a trusty stainless steel grill fueled by our gas line. In the summer, we grill almost every night of the week as it's (1) easy prep and cleanup (2) healthy (for the most part) and (3) yummy. Plus, it gives me an excuse to put my herbs to use. Sadly, I've allowed my cilantro to seed and "run" but still... look at the happy herbs!

I was particularly pleased with last night's dinner and thought I'd share- Grilled Corn and Shrimp with Mango Salsa. I totally made this up on the fly, so pardon the round measurements.

First, preheat the grill. Then toss shrimp in plastic ziploc bag with juice from 1 lime or lemon, diced garlic (a tablespoon worth), a healthy pinch of kosher salt, and a splash of olive oil. Keep in fridge.

Start preparing the corn- pull down the husk and remove the silk. It is not imperative that you remove all the silk- the grilling acdtion will make it much easier to remove. Spread margarine lightly on corn and sprinkle with Emeril's seasoning. Note that the corn below is bi-color corn- it looks like it has globs of butter on it but those are really the white kernels!

Pull the husk back over the corn and put on the grill at medium heat. I've tried grilling without the husk and find it much more challenging to manage the cooking time.

Prepare the mango salsa. This will give the flavors a chance to meld. Cut two mangos, add 2 slices worth of chopped red onion, 1/2 jalapeno pepper (remove seeds first), handful of cilantro, 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt, juice of 1/2 lime, and lime zest. Set aside. Run out to grill to turn corn 1/4 turn. If it takes you a while to chop everything, turn the corn in between!

Prepare flavored butter for corn. Mix chopped cilantro, lime zest, and pinch of salt in with butter.

Drink glass of wine with significant other.

Turn corn another quarter turn.

Move corn to cooler part of grill and turn heat up to high. Toss shrimp on grill. Turn corn if needed. Wait 1 minute and flip shrimp.

Corn should look like this. I always poke a few kernels to see how they are. The whole cooking process for the corn should be about 20-30 minutes. Leaving the husks on gives you a lot more flexibility on the cooking time, I think, and increases the likelihood of good moisture.

Plate up the corn and the shrimp. Toss Mango Salsa on top of shrimp. Serve with sliced avocados and a salad!



  1. BIG mistake to read this at lunch time. Mango salsa and corn? Gotta try this! Thanks for the great idea.

  2. You almost lot me on the 1st "margarine" but you got the butter back on the corn at the end. Close call.

  3. Haha, Terry! I think the water of the margarine piece helps with the moisture reteintion in the corn. That's my faux scientific explanation at any rate.

  4. oh wow this post is making me super hungry!

  5. That looks like the most amazing dinner ever! I am jealous of your great herb garden right outside your back door, how fun is that!?!

  6. Yum! That looks like a great summer meal!
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