Fresh Corn and Mexican Cheese Puff Pastry Pie

Recipe and photo by Tami Ganeles Weiser Yield:  12 servings
Prep Time:  40 minutes Cook Time:  1 hour 15 minutes

Fresh Corn and Mexican Cheese Puff Pastry Pie

Chock full of healthful veggies, rich with two kinds of Mexican cheese, this pie makes a delectable main course for a dairy meal. For a little heat, a small jalapeño pepper goes a long way.

Ingredients

1 tablespoon butter

1 tablespoon oil

1 large sweet onion, peeled and minced

2 stalks celery, leaves included, minced

1 red bell pepper, cut into ¼-inch dice, stem, seeds and white ribs removed

1 small jalapeño pepper, finely minced, stems, seeds and white ribs removed (optional; see Kitchen Tip)

2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced

3 teaspoons salt

¼ teaspoon freshly ground white pepper

Kernels of 4 large fresh ears corn (about 5 cups; see Kitchen Tip)

12 jumbo pitted green olives, chopped into ½-inch dice (about ½ cup)

1 teaspoon fresh oregano leaves

7 eggs, divided

1 cup heavy cream

1 tablespoon hot sauce

1½ cups crumbled cotija cheese

1½ cups shredded queso fresco or mozzarella cheese

1 sheet puff pastry, still frozen

Instructions

  1. Spray a 4-quart (10-by-14-inch) casserole dish with nonstick vegetable oil spray. Preheat the oven to 385°F.
  2. Make the filling: In a saucepan set over high heat, heat the oil until it shimmers. Add the onions and cook for 5 to 7 minutes, until they are translucent and the edges have browned. Add the celery, red pepper, jalapeño if using, and garlic, and cook, stirring, for 2 to 3 minutes. Add the salt and pepper, and cook, stirring occasionally, for 3 minutes. Remove from the heat. Add the corn, olives, and oregano and stir well.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, combine 6 eggs, the cream, hot sauce, crumbled cotija, and queso fresco and whisk to combine completely. Add the corn mixture and stir to combine. Pour into the casserole dish.
  4. Place the puff pastry across the top, and cut two slits as vents. Mix the remaining egg with 1 tablespoon water to make an egg wash, and brush the pastry with it. Place the casserole dish on a rimmed baking sheet and bake for 1 hour, or until it no longer jiggles in the middle.

Kitchen Tips

  1. To cut the kernels off a fresh ear of corn, shuck it well and place it on a work surface. Cut it in half crosswise. Stand it on the work surface, cut-side-down, and with a sharp knife, cut downward to remove the kernels.
  2. The compounds in chili peppers that cause that wonderful feeling of heat on the tongue can cause a not-so-wonderful feeling if they get into your eyes—and it can share its love with other foods on your menu. To avoid cross-contamination, avoid touching your face or eyes after cutting and trimming hot chilies. Change work surfaces and knives. Some cooks wear plastic gloves.
  3. This a great article about puff pastry. I use Trader Joe’s, Pepperidge Farms and Dufour, depending on what I am making. Pepperidge Farms is pareve, Dufour all butter, and btw, Dufour is used in many restuarants.

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