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Jewish World Review
Corn, leek, chorizo in gratifying gratin --- don't expect leftovers!
Corn, as the famous song lyric goes, is "as high as an elephant's eye" at this time of year and is omnipresent on menus. Sweet, succulent, inexpensive and infinitely versatile, no wonder it is so popular! The ears can be boiled or grilled over hot coals, and the kernels can be scraped from the cobs and either pan-fried or included in savory puddings.
The Corn, Leek and Chorizo Gratin featured here is a delectable way to use this summer staple. Diced chorizo, the slightly spicy Spanish sausage (pareve, of course), fresh corn kernels, and chopped leeks are sauteed, then combined with a custard made with eggs, half and half, and sour cream. Grated Gruyere and fresh chopped parsley provide more notes of flavor. The gratin, when baked, boasts a golden crust, and beneath lies pale yellow, creamy custard studded with bits of sausage, corn and leeks.
Two friends, who tasted the gratin as I was testing it, had different ideas. One thought it would make an excellent brunch entree, while the other declared that she would offer it with a salad for lunch. However you serve it, don't expect leftovers!
CORN, LEEK AND CHORIZO GRATIN
- Butter for greasing baking dish
- 3 tablespoons olive oil plus extra if needed
- 8 ounces chorizo, cut into 1/2 inch cubes (see note)
- 5 cups fresh corn kernels (5 to 6 large ears)
- 2 cups chopped leeks, white and light green parts only (3 to 4 medium leeks)
- 4 large eggs
- 1 1/2 cups half-and-half
- 1/2 cup sour cream
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1 1/2 cups (about 6 ounces) grated Gruyere cheese, divided
- 2 tablespoons chopped flat leaf parsley plus 1 to 2 parsley sprigs for garnish
Arrange a rack at center position and preheat oven to 350 F.
Butter a 9- x 13- inch baking dish.
Heat oil in a large, heavy skillet over medium heat. When hot, add chorizo and saute until lightly browned, 3 to 4 minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon to drain on paper towels. To the same skillet add corn and leeks. Cook, stirring often and adding more oil if needed, until leeks and corn are softened, 8 to 10 minutes.
In a large bowl whisk eggs, half-and-half, and sour cream together. Add the chorizo, the corn mixture, 1 cup of the cheese, and chopped parsley; mix well. Stir in 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Transfer this mixture to the baking dish and sprinkle with remaining cheese.
Bake until gratin is golden on top and a knife inserted into the center comes out clean, about 35 minutes. Remove and let rest 10 minutes. (Gratin can be prepared 6 hours ahead; cool, cover and refrigerate. Bring to room temperature and reheat in a preheated 350 degree oven until hot, 15 to 20 minutes.)
Garnish the center of the gratin with parsley sprigs.
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© 2013, Betty Rosbottom Distributed by Tribune Media Services Inc.