Make Ahead

Summer Corn Risotto in Sweet Corn Broth

July 30, 2011
3 Ratings
Photo by James Ransom
Author Notes

I made corn risotto today using the usual chicken broth but I was disappointed with the flavors. The broth seemed to overpower the delicate, sweet flavors of the corn.

As I was pondering what I could do to fix it, my first thought was to use vegetable broth. As I headed to my pantry, my eyes fell upon the pile of corn cobs I had discarded on a plate after taking off the corn. And I had an "a ha!" moment -- use the cobs to make a corn broth!

My husband did the taste test and he pronounced it a keeper! - Susige —Susige

Test Kitchen Notes

Terrific! This is an excellent risotto and a great showcase for summer corn. The stock really sets this apart from the many other corn risotto recipes out there. It's as inventive as it is delicious. An added bonus is that it’s incredibly easy to make. —theediblecomplex

  • Serves 6 to 8
  • Sweet Corn Broth
  • 5 to 6 cobs of sweet corn, raggedly stripped (reserve corn kernels for risotto)
  • 5 cups water
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 3 to 4 cloves garlic, peeled
  • Summer Corn Risotto
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon butter (salted)
  • 1/3 cup thinly sliced shallots (about two large)
  • 3 cloves garlic, smashed and chopped
  • 3 sprigs of fresh thyme, leaves only
  • 1 cup arborio rice
  • 1/2 cup white wine
  • 4 to 5 cups sweet corn broth, heated in a separate sauce pan
  • 1 cup grated Parmesan (Reggiano is preferred)
  • 1 cup reserved corn kernels (or more, to taste)
  • 3 tablespoons butter, cold and chopped into cubes
  • 1 to 2 tomatoes, sliced and salted, if in season
In This Recipe
  1. Sweet Corn Broth
  2. Add water to a large sauce pot with a lid. Add the salt and the smashed garlic.
  3. Break the corn cobs in half and toss them into the water.
  4. Bring the water to a boil and then immediately turn the burner to low, then cover and simmer for one hour.
  5. After simmering for an hour, discard the smashed garlic pieces. Then pick up each corn cob with tongs and using the back of a large knife, scrape the sides of each cob back into the pot to get all the goodness still clinging onto it. Then discard. Please, do not strain the liquid.
  6. If you're ready to make the risotto, place the pan back on a low simmer and proceed. Otherwise, cool the broth to room temperature and refrigerate until ready to use and then bring the broth back to a simmer as you're making the risotto.
  1. Summer Corn Risotto
  2. Heat the olive oil and the butter in a medium sauce pan on medium heat. Then add the shallots and cook until they start to brown, stirring occasionally. Next, add the garlic and thyme leaves, stir to combine and cook one minute.
  3. Add the risotto to the saucepan and stir to mix with the shallot mixture. Continue cooking and stirring, two to three minutes, until the rice absorbs all the fat.
  4. Add the white wine to deglaze the pan. Stir to pull up any shallot mixture goodness from the bottom of the pan. Simmer until the rice starts to absorb the wine, two to three minutes.
  5. Using a ladle, add three ladles of sweet corn broth to the rice mixture, stirring. Continue stirring until the rice absorbs most of the broth.
  6. Continue adding ladles of broth and stirring. One cup of rice should use approximately four cups of stock, sometimes more, sometimes less. After 20 minutes or more, the rice should start looking creamy. Stir and cook until the rice is tender to the bite and no longer crunchy. If you overcook it, the rice will be mushy.
  7. Turn the heat off the pan. Add the cubed, cold butter and stir vigorously. Add the Parmesan and one cup of the reserved corn kernels (or more to taste) and stir to combine. Cover and let sit for at least five minutes before serving.
  8. Serve the risotto with a few sliced tomatoes on the side salted with Kosher Salt and a dash of pepper. The brightness of the tomatoes marries well with the sweetness of the Summer Corn Risotto.
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