Easy dinner recipes: 3 great corn dishes (and how to choose the best ears)

1. In a 4-quart, heavy-bottom soup pot, melt the butter over medium heat. Saute the onions, celery and garlic along with the parsley sprigs, thyme and bay leaf until the onions are soft, about 5 minutes, stirring frequently.

2. Stir in the corn, parsnips, 2 1/2 teaspoons salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper and continue to saute until the parsnips are tender, 20 minutes, stirring frequently.

3. Stir in the milk and bring the mixture to a simmer. Simmer for 30 minutes.

4. Purée the soup using an immersion blender, or in stages using a standing blender, then strain.

5. Adjust the seasoning to taste and sweeten if desired with raw sugar. This makes about 7 cups soup.

6. Serve warm, with a small dollop of mascarpone and a sprinkling of chopped parsley.

Each of 8 servings: 226 calories; 9 grams protein; 26 grams carbohydrates; 3 grams fiber; 11 grams fat; 6 grams saturated fat; 29 mg. cholesterol; 822 mg. sodium.

BUDIN DE ELOTE (CORN PUDDING WITH ZUCCHINI)

Total time: 1 hour, 10 minutes, plus 10 to 15 minutes for settling

Servings: 8 to 10

Note: From "Doña Tomás" by Thomas Schnetz and Dona Savitsky

Butter for pan

3 cups fresh corn kernels (3 to 4 ears)

1 1/2 cups zucchini cut into 1/4-inch dice (3 to 4 slender zucchini)

1/3 cup flour

3 eggs

3 egg yolks

3 cups heavy cream

2 teaspoons kosher salt

1. Heat the oven to 375 degrees with a rack positioned in the center. Butter a 9-inch casserole.

2. Place the corn and zucchini in a bowl and toss with the flour to evenly cover. Spread into the casserole.

3. Wipe the bowl clean and combine the eggs and yolks and whisk briefly. Add the cream and salt and whisk until fully incorporated. Pour over the vegetables.

4. Bake about 1 hour, until lightly browned on top; it should feel like a firm pillow. Allow to cool 10 to 15 minutes before serving.

Each of 10 servings: 342 calories; 6 grams protein; 15 grams carbohydrates; 2 grams fiber; 30 grams fat; 18 grams saturated fat; 223 mg. cholesterol; 283 mg. sodium.  

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