Corn cobs with herbed butter and cheese cloud

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Frankly, you don’t need to do much to corn beyond boil it, butter it, season and enjoy. But if you want to gild the lily, then herbing the butter is a heavenly place to start. Remember that cooking corn in boiling water will leech the flavour into the water quicker than you think, so you really only need to boil for between 4-8 minutes, depending on personal preference (I’ve kept it to 5 minutes, to split the diff). Try and find corn cobs that are still in-husk, as these will not only be fresher, but they’ll also create their own natural handles. Simply strip the husk down to the natural end, but rather than tearing off, tie it around itself and then hook over the pot to cook.


4-6 corn cobs

Chunk of pecorino/parmesan cheese


Herbed butter

250gm of unsalted butter, softened

2 tbsp of mixed fresh herbs, finely chopped (parsley, thyme, rosemary, tarragon, chives – whatever you’ve got, really)

1 tsp salt flakes

½ tsp cracked pepper

1 small garlic clove finely chopped (or a few shakes of garlic powder)

Zest of 1 lemon


Start by making the butter. In a medium-sized bowl place, all the prepared butter ingredients. This is where is it best to have softened butter as you’ll be able to mix and squish all the ingredients together easily. You can roll into a log on baking paper and twist up the ends or pop into container and store in the fridge, depending on how quickly you’ll use it. It will last you 2 weeks in the fridge, as you’ve used fresh herbs. You can also freeze it for up to a month or so.


Now onto the corn. Fill a large, deep pot with well-salted water, and bring to the boil.


While that is coming to the boil, you’re going to peel your corn but keep the husks attached to the cob to make a handle. Gently pull the husks away and then pull down towards the bottom of the cob, remove the corn silks by rubbing at them and discard. Now grab the husks to form a handle at the bottom of the cob. To tie, either tear off a piece of the husk from the cob or if a husk has fallen off, use one of those. Tie around the husks. Repeat until all are well-handled.


Place the exposed cob into the water with the handles sticking out and boil for 6 minutes or until sufficiently sunshine yellow and softened. Remove, place onto a serving platter, rub with plenty of herb butter, and then finely grate cheese over the top to form a cloud.


This herbed butter mix makes enough for plenty of cobs. Feel free to halve the recipe if you’d prefer, or freeze the leftovers for ‘ron.


If the corn has been de-husked, use retro corn handles, or the retro-est handles of all – your fingers.


To make smaller versions of this, break the corn into halves before cooking, and boil for slightly less time.


If you’d prefer to lighten this up further, feel free to mix up olive oil with herbs and paint that over the top of the corn instead of the butter and cheese.

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