Cooking up a Summer Fiesta

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Yvette Marquez-Sharpnack, author of Muy Bueno, cooks up some delicious food for a summer fiesta.

Corn in a Cup
(Elote en Vaso)
12 Servings
 
This is Mexico's finest street dish, often sold in styrofoam cups. Growing up in the border city of El Paso, I saw elote en vaso sold at street corners, bazaars, and festivals. When I moved away from home I craved these steaming corn kernels drenched in melted butter and aromatic lime juice, topped with crumbly cheese. This is a very simple recipe that produces a comforting Mexican classic. Feel free to adjust the proportions of lime juice, crema, cheese, and spices to taste.

Ingredients
10 ears corn
3 sticks (24 tablespoons) salted butter
3 cups lime juice
3 cups crema Mexicana or sour cream
Chili powder to taste
Salt to taste
Hot sauce (optional; recommend Valentina Mexican Hot Sauce)
12 ounces crumbly, salty white cheese (ideally cotija but parmesan is acceptable)
Lime wedges for garnish

Directions
Husk the corn, remove the silks, and slice the kernels from the cobs with a sharp knife. Place the corn in a saucepan with enough salted water to cover. Bring to a boil; let boil for 2 to 3 minutes, then drain. Turn off the heat and return corn to saucepan.

For each serving: Put 3/4 cup of corn in a glass. Add 2 tablespoons of butter and stir to melt the butter. Mix in ¼ cup lime juice and ¼ cup crema. Sprinkle with a good heavy coating of chili powder and salt if desired, though the cheese adds plenty of salt. If you like spicy then add a few drops of some hot sauce for that extra kick of heat. Mix well. Top with 2 tablespoons crumbled cheese.

Serve with a spoon and lime wedges.
Mango, Jicama, and Cucumber Salad
(Ensalada de Mango, Jicama, y Pepino)
8 to 10 Servings
 
Mangos are decidedly my favorite tropical fruit. With its warm yellow hue, fragrant aroma, and juicy flesh, the mango seems to call to me every time I pass them on the street or produce section of my grocery store. I love eating a mango on its own, but I’ve found it also plays nicely with other fruits. Take this salad for instance; mangos, jicama, and cucumber sprinkled with some fresh lime juice and dusted with a little red chile powder. Your mango just went from delicious to unforgettable. Make it at least one day ahead so all the luscious flavors have time to meld.
 
Ingredients
2 small yellow mangos, peeled, pitted, and cut into ½ inch cubes
2 red orgreen mangos, peeled, pitted, and cut into ½ inch cubes
1 medium jicama, peeled and cut into ½ inch cubes
1 medium cucumber, peeled, seeded, and cut into ½ inch cubes
2 to 3 tablespoons lime juice
1/8 teaspoon chile powder or fruit and snack seasoning (recommend Tajin Fruit and Snack Seasoning)
Dash of cayenne pepper
Salt to taste

Directions
In a mixing bowl combine the mangos, jicama, cucumbers, and lime juice. Sprinkle with chile powder, cayenne pepper, and salt.

Toss well, cover, and refrigerate for at least 1 hour before serving. 

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