The past two nights were some of my favorite new summer meals including 2 dishes I had yet to make on my own.

Even better, they featured local and fresh foods and were budget-friendly, something I’m always looking for.

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Sunday night, I made a Sweet Corn Risotto and paired it with some local sprouted wheat bread and tomato salad.

Sweet Corn Risotto

  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2-3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2-2.5 cups fresh corn kernals (I used the kernals from 3 ears of corn)
  • 1/2 cup white wine
  • 4 cups broth
  • 1 cup short grain brown rice
  • 1/4 cup parmesan cheese
  • 2 Tbsp fresh parsley
  • salt, pepper
  1. Bring broth to a simmer in small pan on stove. Keep warm.
  2. In large pot, heat 1 Tbsp olive oil and add onion, corn and garlic, cooking until onions are softened.
  3. Stir in uncooked rice and let cook 1-2 minutes.
  4. Pour in 1/2 cup white wine and let simmer until most of the wine is absorbed.
  5. Add in 1/2 – 1 cup of warm broth at a time, stirring and letting the liquid absorb into the rice before adding the next batch of broth. This will take about 10 minutes each time.
  6. Once the broth has been added and the rice is tender, stir in the parmesan cheese and salt and pepper to taste.
  7. Turn the heat off, put a lid on the pot, and let the risotto sit for 5 minutes.
  8. Stir in parsley right before serving.

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As for the tomato salad, I wanted something simple along side the risotto and I had a surplus of local tomatoes to use.

The reds are brandywine reds from our garden, and I found some delicious yellow teardrop and chocolate cherry tomatoes at the market this weekend. Who knew there were chocolate cherry tomatoes? I didn’t. But after the nice man at the farmer’s market let me taste one, I knew I needed to have them. I diced the tomatoes and tossed them with a pinch of salt and fresh basil.

The entire meal tasted like summer – sugary sweet corn, juicy tomatoes, fresh basil and parsley.

I didn’t think anything could have been better, but then I turned the leftover risotto into these.

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Last night, I tried my hand at arancini (traditionally, deep fried Italian rice balls often made with leftover risotto).

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Naturally, I made a few changes from the recipes I found online including choosing to bake them instead of fry.

I love fried foods, I do. But after a week in Honduras, my stomach is finally getting back to normal and I didn’t want anything messing up that equilibrium just yet.

The great thing? They turned out delicious! And I bet this recipe would work with any cooked grain.

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Baked Sweet Corn Arancini

  • 2 cups leftover risotto or cooked grains
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • salt
  • pepper
  • 1 string cheese, cut into 14-15 pieces (next time I would use fresh mozzarella, but this was all I had)
  • 2 Tbsp cornmeal
  • 2 Tbsp quick oats
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil

Bread crumb mixture:

  1. Preheat oven to 400 and spray baking sheet with oil.
  2. In large bowl, beat 2 eggs.
  3. Add leftover risotto, 2 Tbsp cornmeal, 2 Tbsp quick oats, salt, and pepper to eggs and mix until combined.
  4. In blender or food processor, pulse Arnold Sandwich Thins until you have breadcrumbs. Mix with cornmeal, salt and pepper and pour onto plate.
  5. Take a spoonful of the risotto mixture, press a slice of cheese in the middle and form into a ball with your hands.
  6. Roll each ball in the breadcrumb mixture and place onto baking sheet.
  7. Drizzle with olive oil.
  8. Bake 20-25 minutes or until set and golden.

* For the 15 arancini I made, I only ended up using about 1/4 of the breadcrumb mixture. You could make less and still have enough to coat them.

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Served with a quick tomato sauce, these treats were the perfect way to use the leftover risotto without having the same meal two nights in a row.

I loved the slight crunch on the outside and the creaminess of the risotto and cheese in the center. The tangy and savory tomato sauce was the perfect match with the sweet corn filling.

Along with steamed peas and some more tomato salad, it was another winner of a summer dinner.

And the leftovers of the arancini gave Nick and I lunch today, too. There’s no way we would have had any risotto leftover for lunch if we had just eaten it as-is last night. Funny how that works.

 

 

What are your favorite ways to enjoy fresh, sweet corn in the summer?

 

16 comments

  1. What a great idea for using fresh corn. I think my favorite corn recipe is Black Bean Corn Salad or a Corn and Crab Chowder. Both are excellent!

  2. That risotto sounds fantastic! We have been on a huge corn kick lately, buying a dozen ears on Sunday, grilling them and using them throughout the week. SO GOOD!

  3. I think I discover a new type of tomato every trip to the farmers’ market… and I love eating them with just a sprinkle of salt and some basil. What a great risotto idea you had!

  4. YUM! Those are such delicious, comforting recipes! Thanks!

  5. Both of those look amazingly delicious! Love the arancini.

    Honestly, I am enjoying corn just fresh on the cob. No butter, no salt – it’s good enough on its own! But I do love a good corn and black bean salsa in the summer too :)

  6. I just watched one of my favorite local chefs make sweet corn risotto on TV yesterday and wanted a recipe. It’s like you read my mind! Thanks for sharing it.

  7. ooh, a sweet corn risotto?! sounds heavenly. and arancini look awesome too. i recently had a corn flan that i fell in love with… and have been eyeing the sweet corn ice cream recipes i’ve saved!

  8. I like corn, black beans and peppers. Yumm!

    Jen
    http://jenslosinit.blogspot.com/

  9. Omg, both recipes sound amazing!! I’ve never heard of Baked Sweet Corn Arancini, but I’m pretty sure I’d looooove it!! :) My favorite way to eat corn is grilled on the cob!! :)

  10. I love that your arancini look amazing even without frying. I’ll have to try that technique and the tomatoes are gorgeous. I love the chocolate ones and definitely will be looking out for them for when I plant next year!

  11. wow, that looks amazing! i’ve never heard of the second dish but it sound delicious!

  12. oh wow girl, i love arancini and these sound great! what a good idea to bake them too — i will definitely be trying these at home very soon :)

  13. very nice to know that arancini bake up so well. beautiful photos!

  14. Such inspired local eats! I love the freshness and the colors!
    I’m a fan of sweet corn raw, eaten right off the corn – I can’t help but tear into an ear post-farm stand, which aggravates my boyfriend to no end….something about building patience is usually mentioned!

  15. Sweet corn risotto is on my list of things to make! Yours looks fabulous. And it’s SO good to know you can bake arancini and have it come out well. I DEFINITELY need to try that!!

  16. Those arancini look seriously delicious! I still have a few ears of sweet corn from my CSA last week (and another delivery tomorrow!) must make the risotto.

    Welcome home – and back to ‘normal.’ :)

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