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Categories: Grains and Pasta, Dinner for Two, Supper, Dinner Party, Posted on August 9, 2016 by Sandy Bergsten

My husband and I could eat fresh-picked sweet corn every single day. But just like those truly vine ripened tomatoes the season will soon be over. So I was super excited when I discovered a new way to enjoy these fresh picked ears in the New York Times. The food section had an intriguing recipe featuring orecchiette with a fresh corn sauce.

Orecchiette, from the Italian words “orecchio” (ear) and “etto” (small), is an ear-shaped pasta from southern Italy. How fitting to toss freshly cut kernels from the ears of corn with these little pasta ears! With a few tweaks to the recipe here is my creamy corn pasta.

Be sure to pick up some fresh corn at a farm stand or at the market. Husk the corn, remove the silks, and cut the kernels off. You should have two plus cups of kernels. Set aside ½ cup to be used toward the end of the recipe.

Thinly slice a bunch of trimmed scallions, keeping the whites and greens separate.

Heat a tablespoon of oil in large sauté pan, add the scallion whites and a pinch of salt and cook until soft, about 3 minutes.

Add 1/4 cup water and the non-reserved corn; simmer until the corn is heated through and almost tender. Season with 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper.

Transfer to a blender, or to a high-sided cup and with a hand blender purée the mixture until smooth, adding a little extra water if needed to get a thick but pourable texture.

In the same skillet over medium-high heat, add butter and it let melt. Add the reserved 1/2 cup corn and cook until tender and the butter turns light brown, about 1 to 2 minutes.

Add the corn purée and cook for 30 seconds to let the flavors combine. (The sauce can be made to this point earlier in the day. Cool completely, cover, and refrigerate.)

Bring a large pot of well-salted water to a boil. Cook the pasta until al dente, according to the package directions. Drain, reserving 1/2 cup of pasta water.

In large skillet over medium heat re-warm the corn sauce. Add the drained pasta and half of the reserved pasta cooking water, tossing to coat. Cook for 1 minute, then add a little more of the pasta cooking water if the mixture seems too thick.

Stir in 1/4 cup of the scallion greens, the Parmesan, the basil, the red pepper flakes, 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper.

Sprinkle with a teaspoon of fresh lemon juice, add more to taste.

Transfer to warm pasta bowls and garnish with more scallions, basil, a drizzle of olive oil and a grind of black pepper. Buon appetito!

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