Savory corn & basil cakes speak summer. They’re great as a side dish or the main attraction, and especially delicious when cooked on the grill.
I love corn. Especially during the summer when it’s fresh off the cob. Despite it’s bad rap, especially when it comes to high fructose corn syrup (which, for the record, is nutritionally equivalent to table sugar*), corn is a good source of fiber and antioxidants including vitamin C, lutein, and zeaxanthin, and it provides the B vitamins folate and thiamin. Fresh corn is a vegetable, but did you know, dried corn – including popcorn – is a whole grain?! Farm-fresh corn is at it’s peak from mid-August to mid-September, but depending on the climate, you may still find fresh, local corn until mid-October. In fact, corn is the Whole Grain Council’s October Grain of the Month.
My family and I have been enjoying farm-fresh corn for the past couple of months. I’ve been making basic grilled corn on the cob, various corn and tomato salads, and my new favorite corn recipe, corn & basil cakes. This last recipe was inspired by Eating Well, but I doctored it up a bit to add some more vegetables and flavor. And, to top it off, in the spirit of summer I grilled the cakes too. The end result was a Nutritioulicious recipe that has become a staple of our summer meal repetoire. Although you can make these corn & basil cakes with frozen corn (which is just as nutritious as fresh), grab the last few ears of the season and make a batch before the summer feeling is completely gone!
Corn & Basil Cakes with Lemon Yogurt Sauce
- ½ cup whole-wheat flour
- ½ cup nonfat or low-fat milk
- 2 large eggs
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1 tablespoon canola oil (if making in skillet, use another tbsp oil to coat the pan)
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon freshly ground pepper
- 2 cups freshly grilled corn kernels (about 2 large ears) or frozen
- ½ cup chopped onion
- 1 tablespoon chopped sundried tomatoes
- ½ cup chopped fresh basil
- 6 ounces nonfat plain Greek yogurt
- 1 teaspoon fresh lemon zest
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
- Pinch coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
- Whisk flour, milk, eggs, garlic, 1 tablespoon oil, baking powder, salt and pepper in a medium bowl until smooth. Stir in corn, onions, sundried tomatoes, and basil.
- Heat grill to about 400 degrees. Coat a large piece of aluminum foil with non-stick cooking spray and set on grill grates to heat up. Using a ¼ cup measuring cup, spoon the batter onto the foil and cook until the edges are dry and the middle starts to bubble, about 2 to 3 minutes. Make as many cakes at a time as fit on the foil with each at least 2-inches apart. Flip and cook until golden brown on the other side, 2 to 3 minutes more. Repeat with the remaining batter, making 12 cakes total. Reduce the heat as necessary to prevent burning.
- In a small mixing bowl, or in the yogurt container, combine the yogurt, lemon zest and juice, salt, and pepper. Serve with the Corn & Basil Cakes.
To make the grilled corn, wrap corn with aluminum foil and grill, turning occasionally, until corn kernels begin to brown on all sides. To cut kernels, wait for corn to cool. Stand ears of corn on one end and slice kernels off with a sharp knife. The Corn & Basil Cakes recipe is adapted from Eating Well
Do you have a favorite corn recipe?
*Disclosure: I am a consultant to the Corn Refiners Association, but all opinions are my own.