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Charred-Corn Salsa

Charred-Corn Salsa

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This corn salsa, along with mayonnaise and tomatillos, helps make up the Elote Dog.


  • 2 ounces crumbled queso fresco
  • ¼ cup finely chopped red onion
  • 1 teaspoon finely grated lime zest
  • Kosher salt, freshly ground pepper

Recipe Preparation

  • Prepare a grill for medium-high heat (or heat a dry large cast-iron skillet over medium-high). Grill corn, turning occasionally, until lightly charred, 5–8 minutes. Let cool. Cut kernels off cobs.

  • Toss kernels with queso fresco, onion, oil, and lime zest in a medium bowl; season with salt and pepper.

Reviews Section

Crispy Fish with Charred Corn and Sun Gold Salsa Recipe

As you may have noticed from my previous Dinner Tonight posts, I have something of an infatuation with little tomatoes. And I hate to break it to you, but as long as they're still sweet and in season, I'm going to continue buying them by the basket. Plus, coming up with tasty meals using them is easy. It doesn't really matter what they're combined with—the result will undoubtedly be redolent of summer.

But Sun Golds don't always have to hog the spotlight. Instead of cooking them, I left them raw for this simple salsa, so I could focus my attention on another essential summer ingredient: sweet corn. Following Kenji's method for easily charring corn in a non-stick skillet, I created a salsa that's smoky, crunchy, and, thanks to some jalapeños, spicy. Sounds great, right? But though I've tried before, man can't live on salsa alone.

Considering how great fried chips go with salsa, I hit on the idea of serving the corn salsa with crispy fried fish. I mentally went through a list of all kinds of batters and bread crumb options, but none sounded right, because I wanted to avoid dirtying up the whole kitchen. Fortunately, I came across a technique in Rick Bayless's Authentic Mexican that couldn't be much simpler. Fish fillets are sprinkled with salt and lime and set aside for 30 minutes. Once dried on some paper towels, they need only to be tossed in flour, then pan-fried in a mixture of butter and oil. They come out of the pan with a thin and crispy crust, with no heavy breading to get in the way.

How to Make It

Heat a grill to high (450° to 550°). Brush chiles, corn, and onion with 1/2 tbsp. oil. Grill, turning as needed, until grill marks appear and onion is somewhat softened, 8 to 10 minutes. Let cool.

Peel, stem, and seed chiles and cut into large chunks. Cut corn kernels from cobs. Coarsely chop onion.

In a bowl, toss vegetables with lime juice, remaining 2 tbsp. oil, and salt and pepper to taste. To serve, stir in tomatoes, cilantro, and chives.

MAKE AHEAD Through step 3, chilled airtight up to 2 days.

A few simple ingredients

This corn salsa has just a few basic ingredients:

  • 1 can corn (drained)
  • ½ tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 jalapeño (seeds removed and finely diced)
  • 1 small tomato (diced)
  • 1 splash liquid smoke
  • 2 tablespoons cilantro leaves (minced)
  • 2 tablespoon red onion (finely minced)
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice (from ½ lime)
  • Salt and pepper

Skillet Halibut With Charred Corn Salad Recipe

Yasmin Fahr is a food writer, recipe developer and author of the cookbook Keeping it Simple. She has a penchant for cheesy phrases, lemons, fresh herbs, feta and cumin.

With the heat of summer in full swing, it's hard to want to cook a lot in the kitchen. Turning on the stove—let alone the oven—only adds to the intense heat looming outside and seeping into your home. Or maybe that's just my insanely hot New York City apartment. Regardless, this quick dish is perfect for nights when you want something a little more substantial than the no-cook salads and sandwiches you've been making.

In addition to embracing light and healthy fish, this recipe takes advantage of fresh summer vegetables in the form of a simple charred corn salad flavored with tomatoes, jalapeños, and mint. You can skip the charring of the corn if you want to cut down on cooking time, but it does add a nice smoky flavor. And, if the combination of fish and cheese doesn't bother you, then a little crumbled feta makes a great, tangy addition to the salad.

Recipe Summary

  • 6 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon grated lime zest and 2 tablespoons fresh juice
  • 4 teaspoons chipotle-in-adobo sauce
  • 1 pound portobello mushrooms (3 to 4), cut into 1/2-inch planks
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1 cup finely chopped white onion (1/2 large)
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 2 ears corn, shucked
  • 8 corn tortillas
  • Cilantro sprigs, for serving

Heat grill to medium-high. In a small bowl, whisk together 5 tablespoons oil, 1 tablespoon lime juice, and 2 teaspoons chipotle sauce brush mixture onto both sides of mushrooms. Season generously with salt. In a large bowl, stir together lime zest, remaining 1 tablespoon lime juice, and onion season with salt and pepper. In another small bowl, combine remaining 2 teaspoons chipotle sauce, sour cream, and 1 tablespoon water season with salt.

Grill mushrooms, flipping once, until charred in places, 3 to 4 minutes a side transfer to a plate. Grill corn, turning occasionally, until charred, 6 minutes. Cut kernels off cobs stir into onion mixture with remaining 1 tablespoon oil. Season with salt and pepper. Grill tortillas, flipping once, 30 seconds. Top tortillas with sourcream mixture, mushrooms, corn salsa, and cilantro serve.

Charred Corn and Heirloom Tomato Salsa

This Charred Corn and Heirloom Tomato Salsa packs so much summer flavor into just one bite. By broiling the vegetables, you end up with a delicious charred texture that really brings out the flavor of each ingredient.

It is the perfect dip to chow down on while you are firing up the grill this summer. We ate this with multigrain tortilla chips, but any chip would compliment this well!

The jalapeno makes this salsa quite spicy, so if you prefer a more milder taste, I recommend adding only a small amount of the minced pepper.

Serve this salsa at your next summer barbecue, and you’ll have your guests begging for the recipe!


Although grilled corn works for this recipe, I wanted the charred flavor of the corn. And, believe it or not, there is a method to charring corn.

As simple as it is, many people char their corn too much, which results in inedible corn. The trick, however, is in the temperature and turning the corn continuously while cooking.


  • Fresh corn on the cob
  • Red bell pepper
  • Red onion
  • Fresno chili pepper (or Jalapeno if you can't find a red chili pepper)
  • Cilantro


Let’s make Crispy Pork Tenderloin Tacos!

If you’re making the pork tenderloin tacos all at once, before you prep any of the ingredients, start the process for marinating the pork! This is super important so you can everything done in a timely manner. If you’re making everything ahead of time

Chop the pork

We take the entire pork tenderloin and cut it into 1/4-inch slices. Take those 1/4-inch slices and cut them into thin strips, about 1/8-1/4 inch thick. The thinner, the crispier they will get!

Marinate the pork tenderloin

We have dubbed this a weeknight dinner, and it is, but the pork tenderloin does need to marinate for a bit. Luckily you can do this first, then move on to cooking/prepping everything else.

Whisk the soy sauce, lime juice, honey, and spices together in a big bowl. Add the sliced pork tenderloin and toss to coat. Stir it every few minutes as you make the corn salsa and the crema.

Make the corn salsa

Chop the red pepper, jalapeño, garlic and cilantro. Add it all to a medium bowl. Squeeze the lime juice on top. Sprinkle with salt. Toss.

Make the crema

Add the Greek yogurt, chipotle sauce, lime juice, garlic, and salt to a small bowl. Mix to combine.

Dry the pork

This step is super important. When you add meat that’s been saturated in marinate and remains very wet, it has a tendency to steam instead of crisp up as we’d like. To ensure the pork tenderloin sears properly. We remove the pork from the marinate with a slotted spoon and add it to the same cutting board you cut the meat on. Use paper towels to pat the pork dry.

It doesn’t have to be perfectly dry, you just want to get most of the excess liquid off of it.

Cook the pork:

  1. Heat a large cast-iron (we like this one) or skillet to a high heat. Drizzle it with olive oil to coat the pan.
  2. When the oil is hot, sprinkle the pork with salt.
  3. Working in two batches, add the pork to the pan.
  4. Spread it out in an even layer to ensure the pork doesn’t steam. Don’t move it. You want it to get brown and crispy and if you move it, it won’t sear properly.
  5. After a few minutes, use tongs to flip the meat over. Sear on the other side and then remove from the pan.
  6. Repeat with remaining pork tenderloin.

Char the tortillas. If you have a gas stove, place each corn tortilla on top of a low flame. Watch them carefully! When they start to char, flip over and char on the other side. Transfer to a plate or platter and cover with a kitchen towel while you cook the others.

Assemble! Nestle the pork into tortillas. Dollop with crema. Top with corn salsa.


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