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Buttery Grilled Sweetcorn with Parmigiano Reggiano, fresh dill and capers is your perfect entertaining or al fresco dining side. Whether cooked on a BBQ grill or stovetop griddle, this succulent dish has summer nailed. Perfect for Fourth of July celebrations!
When you think of Parmigiano Reggiano, you may think of autumn and winter warmers. Comforting pasta dishes like Herb-Roasted Squash Stuffed Pasta, and festive side dish Creamed Kale with Parmigiano Reggiano, are Food To Glow favourites.
Parmigiano Reggiano is all that, and more.
When this well-respected brand asked me to create recipes for summer entertaining and al fresco dining, I didn’t hesitate. In fact, I came up with a whole page of ideas. And the first thing I knew I needed to give a cheesy spin was sweetcorn.
Golden ears of corn turned over hot coals until delectably browned, grilled sweetcorn is the epitome of summer, outdoor eating.
It’s delicious, of course, just rolled in a pat of salted butter. But with just a few extra ingredients, you can elevate this quintessential treat for warm weather to something very special. And it could not be easier.
What’s in this buttery grilled sweetcorn recipe?
It’s very simple: freshest sweetcorn on the cob, Dijon mustard, fresh dill, butter, capers and Parmigiano Reggiano. And all you need to make it is an outdoor grill, or stovetop griddle pan.
Start with the best ingredients
While you source sweet, tender corn, also take care over the rest of the elements. This recipe is sooo incredibly simple that lesser quality ingredients have nowhere to hide.
Sweetcorn on the cob is a given. Many of us can only get it already shucked and wrapped in plastic. But if you can, try buying them still in their papery husks, the amber silks just peeking out. A longish stem attached is a bonus handle for turning the corn. You can purchase them from farmer’s markets, farm shops and some larger supermarkets. I got mine at Waitrose. ‘Husky’ corn should be around until early September.
Butter needs to be full of flavour. I prefer something like a tangy goat’s butter or a good French butter (unpasteurised Normandy butter is my choice).
Capers, brined or packed in salt are fine, but rinse the salted ones very well.
Dill, feathery and fresh, is a must. If you can’t “do” dill, fresh leaves of tarragon are a good swap.
And Dijon mustard to me means Maille. No arguments.
Parmigiano Reggiano, the real deal, is non-negotiable. No substitutes will do. Get a proper hunk.
To ensure that you are buying the authentic Parmigiano Reggiano, make sure it has a dotted rind and is certified with both the Parmigiano Reggiano and PDO logos.
Why authentic Parmigiano Reggiano?
It tastes like no other cheese. Rich, nutty, minerally, savoury and very umami are my words to describe what I taste. And the texture is agreeably firm, grainy and crumbly under the point of a knife, falling away in pleasing pale chunks, or shards.
Parmigiano Reggiano – a wholly natural cheese with no preservatives or additives – is one of the oldest cheeses in the world. Deeply flavoured and made using just three ingredients, it is produced largely the same way it was nine centuries ago. That’s quite a pedigree.
If you have had the pleasure of tasting real Parmigiano Reggiano, you already know that it is very difficult to stop nibbling once you start. I had to properly restrain myself while making my recipes, as did Andrew. I think they knew this would happen, hence the huge wedges of 24-month aged cheese I gratefully received for recipe creation.
Inferior cheeses – the ones that lack the essential PDO (Protected Designation of Origin) label – are usually one-note affairs. Often waxy or oily in texture, and nearly always salty (to make up for lack of true, intrinsic taste), generic “parmesan” doesn’t compare to the real deal in any way. And, while some cheeses use wheat or other gluten-containing starches, especially some non-dairy cheeses, you can be assured that Parmigiano Reggiano will never have gluten.
I know that sounds a bit harsh, but once you taste proper, authentic Parmigiano Reggiano it is hard to settle for lesser versions.
And a little goes a long way. Because the flavour is so satisfying and “real” I find that I don’t need to use as much to get the desired taste and mouthfeel. More to nibble! Do you agree with me?
Check your weather forecast and decide between BBQ grill and stovetop griddle pan, because you will want to make this buttery grilled sweetcorn recipe very soon.
Maybe even for tomorrow’s US Independence Day!
For further information, please go to Parmigiano Reggiano.
Buttery Grilled Corn with Parmigiano Reggiano and Dill
Buttery Grilled Sweetcorn with Parmigiano Reggiano, fresh dill and capers is your perfect entertaining or al fresco dining side.
- 4 ears sweetcorn very fresh
- 30 g butter
- 1 tsp Dijon mustard
- 2 tbsp fresh dill finely chopped
- 2 tbsp capers rinsed if in salt; finely chopped
- 1/2 tsp black pepper freshly ground
- 30 g Parmigiano Reggiano finely grated; more to taste and serve
- 1 head Butterhead or Little Gem lettuce optional, to serve
- 1 small lemon cut into wedges, for serving
Remove the husks and silks from your sweetcorn - if it's not already done for you.
For outdoor grill: Prepare your outdoor grill according to manufacturer's instructions. In my case I used charcoal briquettes and lit them, letting them do their thing until ashy. Then I spread them out and put on the cooking grates to heat for a few minutes. I use a little 1970s style hibachi grill.
For indoor stovetop griddle pan: Heat the pan over a high flame. Test the heat by splashing - be careful - a bit of water onto it. If it sputters and steam immediately, it is ready.
When your grill or griddle pan is ready, lay on the corn, turning every few minutes until it is slightly charred on all sides. This will take up to 15 minutes, depending on the intensity of the heat.
Place the butter, mustard and chopped capers into a small pan and place on your grill, or on your stove. Melt the butter and stir well. Season with pepper.
Place washed lettuce leaves (if using) on a platter. Once the corn is ready, place it onto the platter (on the leaves) and spoon over the butter. Immediately shower with grated Parmigiano Reggiano and chopped dill. The lettuce wilts slightly and catches the buttery excess. Serve a few lettuce leaves with each corn cob; it makes an edible sweetcorn holder if the corn is very hot. Or just to eat with extra parm and buttery juices. Lemon wedges passed around, too. See below for leftovers idea!
This recipe is easily increased.
Make more than you need just to have leftovers! A fab way to enjoy it again is to cut the grilled corn from the cob(s) and toss it together with chopped ripe tomatoes, grilled asparagus and/or eggplants, sliced lettuce and more dill. Make up a dressing with lemon or cider vinegar, olive oil and Dijon mustard. And add plenty of grated Parmigiano Reggiano (see image in post above).
For more information about the best ways to grill corn, see this article from seriouseats.com.
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