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With Grilled Corn

Grilled corn on the cob cooked in the husk and slathered with butter is a delicious side dish at any summer meal. But this tender, smoky veggie can be so much more. Here are eight extraordinary things you can do with grilled corn on the cob.

Grilled Corn

1. Grilled Corn Fajitas

As you are grilling your peppers, onions and skirt steak, grill a few ears of corn and add them to the fajita mix. You can even make a vegetarian version by wrapping smoky corn kernels, grilled onions and peppers in your favorite type of tortilla.

2. Grilled Corn Cornbread

Let's face it: A lot of the cornbread that gets served these days bears more resemblance to yellow cake than classic cornbread. If you like your cornbread savory, add an ear or two's worth of grilled corn kernels to your cornbread mix before baking. The smoky whole kernels keep their chewy texture and some of their moisture, making your cornbread mouthwateringly moist.

3. Grilled Corn Soup

Even though it's not exactly summer food, grilled corn chowder is easy and has a smoky punch you don't get from the usual corn chowder. Just grill 6 to 8 ears of corn, remove the kernels from the cob and put them in a soup pot with some veggie broth. Bring to a boil, stir in some cream, and use a food processor or immersion blender to make the soup silky smooth. Serve with a dollop of sour cream, a few ribbons of basil, and a drop or two of hot sauce.

4. Grilled Corn Nuggets

Corn nuggets are a Southern fried delicacy made from creamed corn that is breaded and deep-fried. They are certainly not diet food, but they are most definitely hard to resist. If you want to make corn nuggets at home, get a can of creamed corn, drain the cream, add the kernels from an ear of grilled corn, one egg and some panko bread crumbs so that the corn can be rolled into balls. Dip the balls of corn into a beer batter and fry them in peanut oil until golden brown. Serve hot with ranch dressing.

5. Grilled Corn Salad Topping

This one is a no brainer. Make a few extra ears of grilled corn at your next cookout, cut kernels off the cob, and keep them in the refrigerator to use as a sweet, non-fat topper for any delicious summer salad.

6. Grilled Corn Succotash

Don't let your succotash suffer any longer! Use grilled corn in your usual succotash recipe for a side dish with an extra smoky flavor. Combine lima beans, grilled corn, sauteed onions, green peppers and garlic for a tasty take on this often maligned bean and corn dish.

7. Grilled Corn Black Bean Salsa

Need the perfect dip? Make a grilled corn salsa. Grill a tomato, onion, jalapeno pepper, and two ears of corn; chop and mix with warm black beans, salt and garlic. This tasty Southwestern dip -- with its jalapeno heat, smoky corn sweetness, and savory tomato and black bean flavors -- is a dynamite accompaniment for chips and for topping burgers and grilled meats.

8. Just add compound butter

If, however, you don't have the patience to wait to eat your grilled corn as an integral component of other delicious dishes, you can always make a compound butter to slather over it when it comes hot off the grill. To make a compound butter, simply mix together two sticks of room temperature butter, juice and zest of one lime, and a tablespoon of chili powder. Serve with your grilled corn, slather it on cornbread or stir it into grilled corn kernels. Yum!

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