Saturday, September 12, 2009
The Things I Don't Know
I wish there was someone else to blame, I really do. Three-year-olds get to point their fingers with impunity as do prominent politicians (remember Sen. Larry Craig?) and corporate executives (Enron, Lehman Brothers, etc., etc.).
So I guess I'll just have to plead ignorance, hang my head in embarrassment and shame and admit that all these years I've been tossing out corn cobs after scraping off the golden sweetness of their kernels. Little did I know that you can take those sheared cobs, submerge them in water, simmer for a half hour or so and…voila!…you'll have the most wonderful stock for risottos, soups and sauces.
I can only plead for mercy and promise, cross my heart (and in my best Scarlett accent), never to let another cob go unused again.
Corn Risotto with Bacon and Basil
3 slices thick-cut bacon, sliced in 1/4" strips
1 Tbsp. olive oil
1 Tbsp. butter or margarine
1/2 yellow onion
2 cloves garlic
2 c. arborio rice
1 c. dry white or rosé wine
2 c. corn kernels
5 c. corn stock
1/3 c. basil, chopped fine
1/2 c. parmesan, plus more for sprinkling
Salt, to taste
In 2 1/2-3 qt. heavy-bottomed sauce pan, cook bacon until its fat is rendered but it is not yet crispy. Add oil and butter and melt. Add onion and garlic and sauté over medium heat till translucent. Add rice and stir for about 30 seconds till grains are hot and coated with oil. Add corn and combine. Add wine and stir till absorbed, adjusting heat so rice doesn't stick. Stirring frequently, add stock one ladle-full at a time, allowing rice to absorb it before adding more. When rice is tender but still slightly al dente, stir in basil and cheese and adjust salt to taste.