Corn Sauce, I realize that it doesn’t sound that sexy. However this is one sauce that I turn to a lot in the kitchen for several different uses. What started as a way to bring one more level of flavor to a dish, has evolved in to something that I keep finding uses for.
Where it began- A few years back I participated in a cooking competition in which I had several weeks to determine what I wanted to prepare. It was simple, four courses with one hour to complete them all. The menu that I had developed at the establishment I was working at had a really nice sandwich on the menu of smoked trout, and a fried green tomato. It was served with an herb aioli and was pretty popular on our menu. I wanted to bring this dish to the competition however I wasn’t going to serve a sandwich. The flavor combinations were good, however I felt that it needed one more component in order to truly make it special. So after thinking about what would compliment a fried green tomato and trout on a plate I came to the conclusion that a nice fresh ear of corn would be the perfect compliment to what we were already going to have on the plate. I knew that I didn’t want the judges to have to pick up an ear of corn or fish after pieces of corn on the plate with their fork, so the only answer was to make a sauce that would bring that flavor and not disturb what I already was going to put on the plate. This is what I came up with, I hope you give it a try!
You can use fresh corn, or frozen corn to make this sauce. I do not recommend canned corn however.
What you will need:
1 One pound bag of frozen corn
1 Carrot cut in large pieces
1 Stalk of Celery cut in large pieces
1/2 Red Onion peeled
2 Cloves of Garlic whole
1/2 Pound of Butter
Salt and Pepper to taste
Use a small sauce pot, or large skillet that will comfortably hold all of the ingredients and place it over medium heat. Keep in mind through this whole process that you do not want to use high heat. You’re just trying to extract flavors and bring them together. Tying to speed up the process with high heat will not help you with the end product in any way.
Place the butter in the skillet that you’re going to use and when it begins to melt pour in the corn, and add the carrot, celery, onion, garlic and season everything with salt and pepper. Give everything a good stir and just let it come to a simmer. This may take some time, but it is worth the wait. Once a simmer is reached, give everything a good stir again and let it simmer for 30-45 minutes. Turn the heat off and let the skillet set and cool to room temperature.
Remove the carrot, celery, onion, and garlic and spoon the corn in to a blender. You want all of the corn, and butter in the blender and then blend on high, add a small amount of heavy cream in order to reach the consistency that you want. Let the blender run on high until the sauce is smooth. Turn off the blender and taste the sauce, adjust seasoning as needed. Depending on the application I am going to use the sauce for I will pour it in to a strainer and allow it to drain through. Most generally I will just use it as is.
In the end you will have a very flavorful sauce that brings a really strong corn flavor to several different applications.
Roasted Garlic and Cumin Pork Loin
Grilled Pork Chops (Pictured above)
Fried Green Tomato and Smoked Trout
As an accompaniment to a Black Bean, Red Onion Salad- just toss with the salad and you have a south west treat
Stirred in to Polenta just as it is about to be finished cooking, This makes the Polenta a star on the plate, not an afterthought.
These are all things that I have used this sauce for. And each time it is received very well. Corn Sauce may not sound like something earth shattering, however if your goal is to bring flavor to the plate then you should certainly give this a try.