Presentation and taste...
Mostly taste! These little gems are Bobby Flay's Blue and Yellow Corn Muffins. According to Bobby, these are the most consumed item at his MESA GRILL restaurants. They are the hit of his bread basket.
And look close, Fresh sweet (really sweet) corn, red bell peppers and jalapeños add color, texture and taste. Out of the ordinary muffins to be sure. And continues my streak of Farmer's market related posts.
Finding the blue corn meal can be a bit of a challenge. There are plenty of places on the internet to order. I found this at my neighborhood store. Oddly enough, it was not on the shelf sitting next to "regular" corn meal, it was sitting in the gourmet food section. So, you may need to hunt, but it does exist, and it is available. Just start asking.
But, the blue is just for looks. Tastes the same as yellow corn meal. So, feel free to use this recipe with the easy to find stuff.
One other note, I use something called "Polenta Corn meal". The ingredient list is exactly the same, but the color is much deeper yellow. Tastes the same, just better presentation.
Makes 12 large muffins or 3 dozen little mini muffins...
Nonstick cooking spray
6 TBS Butter
1 cup fresh Sweet Corn kernels (can use frozen)
1/2 cup finely diced Red Onions
1/2 cup finely diced Red Bell pepper
1/2 cup smashed and chopped roasted Garlic (about 6 cloves)
2 jalapeño Chili Peppers, finely diced
2 TBS finely chopped Cilantro
1 1/2 cup all-purpose Flour
1TBS Baking Powder
1/2 tsp Baking Soda
4 tsp Kosher Salt
1 1/3 cups whole Milk
4 large Eggs
2 TBS Honey
1 cup Yellow Corn Meal
1 cup Blue Corn Meal
OK, before I get to the instructions, a bit of fair warning, if you compare the ingredient list to what is printed in the Mesa Grill Cookbook, there are a couple of little changes. I doubled the amount of corn. I like corn. I like the looks of corn just busting out of these muffins when you break into one. And the Kansas Sweet Corn right now is the best in the world. I also roasted the garlic cloves (350 degree oven, rubbed with olive oil, wrapped in aluminum foil for 30 minutes). The book says to mince the cloves. I roast em, smash em with the blade of a knife and chop those. The roasting adds deeper garlic flavor. The smashing makes more of a paste, makes for a creamier taste.
- Roast the garlic while you Mise en Place the veggies. Start chopping.
- Rack in the middle of the oven, preheated to 400 degrees. Grease a 12 muffin pan, or mini muffin pans. I was going to serve these with soup, so made mini muffins that worked great as croûtons.
- In a small saucepan, melt the butter, add the onion and cook until soft, about 4 minutes. Add the smashed and diced garlic. Divide the mixture evenly between two bowls.
- In another large bowl, whisk together the milk, honey, eggs, red peppers, jalapeños, corn and cilantro. Add half of the mixture in with each of the bowls containing the onion mixture.
- Put the blue and yellow corn meal in separate bowls. Add half the flour, baking powder and baking soda in with the corn meal. Sprinkle a bit of salt in each. Mix each corn meal mixture with the separate onion mix.
- Put a spoon full of each mixture side by side in a muffin mold. Do not mix, as you want the Yin/Yang look. Bake for 16 minutes (or for 14 minutes if you are making the mini muffins).
- Serve with Farmer's Market Butternut Squash - Sweet Corn - Crab Bisque
Here's a few more photos to give you a better idea of how to make these...
Recipe #3 from the book. Great to cook from, great to inspire (and even better to eat from!)
Bobby is a winner!