Remember what a pain braces were when you were a teenager? And remember how they sucked even that much more during the summer months when fresh corn on the cob was in season? That specific food was the bane of my existence during those challenging teeth-straightening years. I can recall a truly epic fail when I once dared to devour corn on the cob, only to see my mom abashedly point to her teeth, signaling that I had bits and pieces lodged in between the neon rubber bands of my braces. She then went into the kitchen to fetch a medieval looking device that removed the corn from the cob in one swift motion. Even though I was really impressed with the tool, I still felt a little ashamed, like I wasn’t quite as cool as my older brother and sister who weren’t exactly cob-challenged like I was.
From previous posts like this and this, it is easy to see that I am not only totally obsessed with corn, but I also prefer to eat it off of the sometimes daunting cob – maybe that’s just the awkward teenager in me. When I recently came across this recipe for Mexican grilled corn (or Elote Loco), all of my painful braces memories came rushing back. Just the thought of biting into a messy, cheese-covered piece of corn on the cob made my teeth and gums ache. After modifying the classic recipe for Elote Loco, my Roasted Corn and Cojita Quesadillas are not only easier to make, but also easier to eat! The best part is that they won’t have you incidentally reaching for the floss and toothpicks afterwards. My mother would be so proud.
Roasted Corn and Cojita Quesadillas
2 ears of corn or 2 cups frozen corn
Butter for sautéing the corn and frying the tortillas
Cayenne pepper or chili powder
Fresh lime juice
2 large tortillas
½ cup Queso Fresco, grated
½ cup Cojita cheese, grated
Cut the corn from the cob using a sharp knife. This will be messy, so be ready for corn to fly in every direction. Sauté the corn with some butter in a pan over medium high heat until it has roasted a bit. Add a pinch of cayenne pepper or chili powder, splash of fresh lime juice, and some chopped cilantro. Stir and then pour into a bowl and set aside.
Melt some more butter in the same pan. Fill half of a tortilla with grated cheese and corn and then fold it over. Fry in the pan until golden brown on both sides. Repeat with the other tortilla, remainder of the cheese, and corn. Garnish with cilantro, salsa, and sour cream and enjoy!