Friday, July 20, 2012
This is an unflattering picture. I'm dressed down, and I have food on my mouth. But I don't care because elote is delicious, and you need to know about it.
Elote is a kind of Mexican street food - grilled corn on the cob slathered with condiments like mayo, cheese, chili powder, and things like that. I made a sauce of mayo, garlic, paprika, black pepper and feta cheese (goat feta, good stuff). Since we are not allowed to grill on our מרפסת (curse you, Technion fire safety rules!), I broiled the corn in the oven.
Folks, this corn was sub par. Off the top of my head, corn may be the only exception to the all-Israeli-produce-is-delicious rule I can think of. If anyone in Israel grows real sweet corn, I have not found it. Plus, the oven treatment left the kernels kind of dry and chewy.
But NONE of that mattered. The combination of creamy, salty, cheese sauce and nutty, roasty, slightly sweet corn was unbelievably good.
Most people I know make corn to go with a cookout, or some other meat meal. I suggest you make this the center of a quick, delicious weekday dairy meal (we just started the 9 days..). If you live in the US, you can probably buy amazing sweet corn for next to nothing. Even if you can't get the ultimate corn, this dish is worth a try.
I'm not here to tell you that miso is delicious, because I already told you that before.
I am here to either reprimand you or praise you. If you have already incorporated some form of miso soup/Asian noodle dinner into your regular rotation, well done! If not, you are seriously missing out!
Take this dinner, for example. Those aren't even real rice noodles, it's just spaghetti. The soup is a base of miso with a little sesame oil, soy sauce, vinegar, garlic, ginger, black pepper and paprika with added water to make it into soup. I actually just guessed those ingredients, because I don't remember, and it barely even matters as long as you have the miso base and a little soy.
On top is cubed tofu, which I tossed into the soup, and diced raw scallions.
Next to the bowl of noodles is a bottle of sriracha sauce. Isn't that exciting? Here's a little story about sriracha. Once upon a time when I was a young lad of 19 or so, I tasted a delicious, fiery hot sauce that came in a plastic squeeze bottle, and had a picture of a rooster on it. It was Huy Fong Sriracha, and the hechsher on it was oh-so-sketchy. I can still find it here in Israel, with the same sketchy hechsher. Alas, after fruitless Googlings and scouring inconclusive Chowhound threads, I decided - better not buy it. I tried buying the Healthy Boy brand of sriracha from Supersol, but it was just a runny, barely spicy, overly sweet sauce that was nothing like sriracha.
But then I visited the Jerusalem branch of the store מזרח-מערב, and behold! I found a knockoff sriracha by the brand Taste of Asia, with a much more reliable hechsher. They even copied the plastic squeeze bottle. And the taste? Sweet, but then the garlic hits you, and then the heat - like a rolling fireball blazing out over your tongue in an expanding delicious inferno. Whether the tears were from joy or pain, I did not know. I had found my sauce.