Normally as we round the corner into the fall, I'm digging in my heels and refusing to acknowledge the end of summer. I'm definitely not one of those people who turns into PUMPKIN EVERYTHING in mid august… or mid September even. Up until September 23rd, I'm firmly still in summer-mode. Thus, while bloggers everywhere are bringing you pumpkin and apples, I'm bringing you sweet corn queso dip. I might not be a cool, up to the minute blogger, but I'm living in the now. And the now is gorgeous weather, football, corn, and queso. Queso is always in the now.
This queso is a little more than just corn mixed into queso. You puree some of the kernels, then mix in whole kernels; thus creating a perfect corny bite. While this is an ode to summer corn, it's also pretty much a perfect snack for watching football, cooking out, or just sitting outside and enjoying the perfect weather with a margarita.
I'm pretty much a sucker for any queso dip, but combining it with some of my favorite summer produce was revolutionary. We all huddled around this scooping, dipping, and munching until the dish was scraped clean. So whether you are a fall-lover or a stage five summer-clinger, this dip will definitely make you happy! Long live queso!
Sweet Corn Queso Dip
adapted from Food and Wine, December 2013
While you can definitely use frozen corn for this, I'd highly recommend that you use fresh corn when it's in it's peak!
- 3 cups fresh corn kernels (4-5 ears).
- reserved cobs from corn
- 2 Tbs canola oil
- 1 poblano chile, stemmed, seeded, and diced
- 1/2 medium onion, diced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- kosher salt
- 1 tsp chile powder
- 8 oz Monterey Jack cheese, shredded
- 2 Tbs minced fresh cilantro
- cilantro, tomatoes, onions, jalapeño slices, etc for garnish
Cut the kernels from the cob. Using the back of a spoon, scrape the spent cobs to "milk" them.
In a blender, combine half the corn kernels, the corn milk, and 1/3 cup of water. Puree until smooth.
In a medium skillet, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the poblano and onion, and cook until softened, stirring often, about 5 minutes. Stir in the remaining corn, a big pinch of salt, garlic, and chile powder. Cook an additional 2 to 3 minutes.
Add the corn puree and stir to combine. Bring to a simmer. Cook until slightly thickened, about 2 minutes.
Reduce the heat to low and stir in the cheese, a little at a time, until it is melted and incorporated. Remove from heat and stir in the cilantro, then season with additional salt if needed. Garnish with diced tomatoes, more cilantro, jalaponeo slice, etc. Serve immediately with tortilla chips.