These days, the squares and plazas of Washington, DC are populated by food trucks painted in bright, popping colors and sporting smart names. Cupcakes and yogurt and fusion tacos are but a few of the goodies to be found. But Beltway Insiders remain deprived of the kind of street food that is worthy of an edgy No Reservations episode. Snow cones in fluorescent flavors sold out of the backs of rickety trucks. Street-corner sopes prepared on homemade comals. Tacos de la calle of every variety prepared in jury-rigged carts. And glass vats of aguas frescas in makeshift coolers crafted on the front ends of banana-seat bicycles.
This holiday weekend, in solidarity with corner cooks everywhere, we are grilling corn Mexican-style with crema, cotija cheese and a heavy dose of chile. Here’s how its done (inspired by the women of Muy Bueno Cookbook):
- 4 ears of fresh corn
- ¼ freshly-squeezed lime juice
- ⅓ cup of crema mexicana
- ⅓ cup of cotija cheese
- 1 teaspoon (or more) of cayenne pepper
- Salt to taste
- Mix together the lime juice, crema, and cotija cheese. Reserve a bit of the cheese.
- Add cayenne pepper and salt to taste.
- Shuck each ear of corn and boil in water for 2 minutes.
- Set aside and warm an outdoor grill.
- Over high heat, roast the corn until it is browned.
- Dredge each ear of corn in the mixture and sprinkle additional cotija cheese and chile to taste.
- Garnish with lime and cilantro.