Corn is more versatile than you may think. If you’re tired of the same routine of grilling corn on the cob or boiling sweet corn as a side dish for your weeknight dinners, then this recipe is right for you. You actually use sweet summer corn in two ways in this recipe, guaranteeing no corn will go to waste with this roasted corn quesadilla recipe.
Forget about buying those store-bought tortillas. You can make dinner interesting tonight by making your own homemade tortilla using only corn, water, salt and masa harina. You can usually find masa harina in the international aisle at most major grocery stores, but in case you don’t have access to this key ingredient, you can use corn flour or cornmeal as a substitute. However, keep in mind that there may be some differences in flavor.
This recipe makes a great vegetarian dinner that won’t burn a hole into your pockets. If you already have your grill ready to go, roast some fresh corn until it’s charred and shave off the kernels. Toss half of the corn in a blender along with water and salt. Once it’s blended smooth, combine the mixture with masa harina and knead until it creates a soft dough. Roll it out into six balls and let it rest for 15 minutes covered in plastic wrap. When it’s ready, flatten your dough with a tortilla press and cook on a heated griddle or skillet. Once your tortillas are ready, it’s time to assemble the quesadilla.
Add grated Monterey Jack cheese on your homemade tortillas. Of course, you can include a blend of other cheeses if you prefer, such as pepper jack, cheddar, queso fresco or whatever you have on hand. Then spread the unused corn kernels over the cheese, fold the tortilla in half and cook until the cheese is melted. You can also give this dish more flavor by including grilled bell peppers or roasted tomatoes in the filling. For meat lovers, you can easily add pieces of grilled steak or chicken to the dish. Serve these delicious gooey quesadillas with guacamole and your favorite summery salsa recipe.
2 ears fresh corn, shucked
1/2 cup hot water
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup masa harina
3/4 cups grated Monterey Jack cheese
Step 1: Build or spark a hot fire. Rub both ears of corn with a little oil. Grill corn, turning regularly until kernels turn brilliant, plump and are charred here and there for about 12-14 minutes. Shave kernels from cobs. Toss half in the blender; set aside the rest.
Step 2: Add 1/2 cup water and 1/4 teaspoon salt to the blender. Blend as smooth as possible.
Step 3: Measure 1 cup masa harina into a bowl. Pour in blended corn and knead to a soft dough that is not sticky (add a spoonful more masa harina if need be). Roll dough into 6 balls. Cover with plastic wrap and let rest for 15 minutes.
Step 4: Heat a griddle or skillet over medium-high. Line a tortilla press with a square of plastic cut from a zip-top baggie. Set one dough ball on plastic. Cover with a second square of plastic and press into a 6-inch tortilla. Peel off top plastic. Flip the tortilla onto an open palm; peel off remaining plastic and set the tortilla onto the hot griddle.
Step 5: Spread 2 tablespoons cheese over the tortilla. Spread 2 tablespoons corn over cheese. When the bottom of the tortilla begins to brown (about 30 seconds), fold the tortilla in half, pressing edges together, and continue to cook, turning once, until cheese has melted and outside is crisp, about 2 minutes more.
Step 6: Slip quesadilla off the griddle and onto a baking sheet. Keep warm in a low oven. Repeat, shaping and crisping remaining quesadillas. Serve with salsa and guacamole.