Ad Hoc is a cookbook written by Thomas Keller. The book is much different from The French Laundry one. Ad Hoc opens up with a few dinner recipes that Mr. Keller made for his Dad; BBQ chicken with mashed potatoes and collard greens, followed by strawberry shortcake. The rest of the cookbook is what he calls “delicious approachable food that makes you feel good.” With his promise of no immersion circulator or complicated garnishes I thought I’d try a very basic recipe to see if he was telling the truth. In fact, my Mom has the same cookbook and we decided to cook up the summer corn and compare notes.
The picture Mom sent me of my Dad licking the empty bowl is only a small indication of how gratifying this dish is. Now that corn is in season you won’t be disillusioned on why one should eat with the seasons.
Grate the zest of 1 lime; set aside. Cut the lime in half.
Melt 3 tbs. butter in a large frying pan over medium heat.
Add the corn and squeeze about 1 tbs. lime juice to taste and season with salt. Reduce heat to medium-low and cook until all the liquid has evaporated, concentrating the flavor, and the corn begins to sizzle, 15-17 minutes.
Stir in 3/4 cup cream (my Mom used half-n-half), 1/8 tsp. cayenne pepper, and lime zest. Continue to cook for 6-8 minutes, until the cream is absorbed by the corn. Add up to 1/4 cup more cream if desired for a creamier texture. Add salt to taste and stir in 1 1/2 tbs. chives.
Mr. Keller says in the book that lime and corn go naturally together. There is another recipe for a lime salt that you put on the cobs if you were to cook them whole. Mom and I agree, this creamed summer corn recipe is a major hit! Really simple and delectable.
I tried a few more things out in the cookbook, scallops and collard greens. It’s wonderful having one of the top chefs write a book that a home cook can use and be successful at. All three recipes were home runs. Thank you Mr. Keller! I look forward to making more from Ad Hoc At Home.