Wednesday, December 27, 2006
Updated from the archives August 18, 2008:
These sweet corn tomalitos are similar to that scoop of corn stuff you get on a corn husk at Chevy's. You know, the corn thing with the cactus-shaped tortilla stuck in it? Or you can serve them as patties and all fancy with salsa and sour cream sauce like the sweet corn cakes at Cheesecake Factory. Sort of like a Vietnamese corn che (dessert pudding) without the coconut milk. I think they're technically a Tex-Mex side dish, but anyway, if you like corn as much as I do, they're good.
Sweet Corn Tomalito
For an 8-inch diameter pan, or about a dozen patties, you'll need:
1/4 cup butter (1/2 stick)
1/2 cup masa harina (corn flour, not to be confused with corn meal)
1/2 cup cornmeal
1/4 cup light brown sugar
1/2 cup milk or yogurt
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 14-oz cans creamed-style corn or substitute one can with 1 can drained corn kernels
In a bowl, beat together 1/2 stick butter and 1/4 cup sugar until light and fluffy. Add the rest of the ingredients and blend until smooth. Masa harina on the left, cornmeal on the right.
Pour the mixture into a round pie pan or 8-by-8-inch pan. I upended my bamboo steamer and placed the pan on top of that. If you don't have one, upend a bowl, wet a paper towel and place it on top to hold the pan in place and reduce friction, and then place the pan on top.
This mixture looks a little thick because I only had one can of corn left. I guess I could have decreased the flour and cornmeal, but I had already dumped them into the bowl before I checked my cupboard. It still came out fine, so you could use only 1 can if you wish, but I like more corn.
Steam for about 45 minutes to 1 hour or until pudding is firm. Check water occasionally, and refill if necessary. May be eaten immediately spooned into scoops.
Or leave at room temperature to cool down, then shape into patties and pan-fry until crispy.
Or, a third option, is to bake it at 350 degrees for about an hour. Baking gives the pudding a crisp crust, while the inside stays soft and mushy.
I've made about four batches of this stuff for Christmas and prefer the first two methods best. I barely got these off the pan before they were scooped up and eaten.
Eating the sweet corn tomalito steamed is best when it's fresh and warm. Otherwise, pan-frying them gives a nice crispiness to the outside, while the inside stays pudding-like.
I served these with drizzles of Aji Verde (Peruvian Green Chili Sauce) and chopped tomatoes.
Let's take a look back at how bad my photography was in the early days, shall we?
Eek! And yet, I still published this recipe anyway!