This dish is a song about summer. It's also a really fun and different way to cook pasta. As much as I love corn and tomatoes, the birdseye chilis are my favorite thing about this dish. They pack a ton of flavor and heat so use them sparingly according to your tolerance but do not leave them out, they are the star of the show.
- 4 ears of corn
- 1 medium yellow onion, minced
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tbs vegetable oil
- 1 pint of cherry tomatoes, halved
- 2 tsp kosher salt
- 2-4 birdseye chilies
- 1 # box of rigatoni
- 1 oz fresh chevre
- Shuck the corn, cut off the kernels and reserve them. Put the cobs in a small stock pot and add 2 quarts cold water.
- Bring this to a boil and simmer for 30 minutes. This is your corn stock that you will use to cook the pasta.
- While the corn stock is simmering, chop up the onion and garlic.
- Heat the oil over medium heat in a medium sized pot. Add the onion and garlic and reduce the heat to low. Cook these very slow, stirring occasionally. They should cook like this until the corn stock is ready.
- After 30 minutes taste the corn stock and see if it is sufficiently corny, you may want to cook it a little bit longer, but don't spend more than an hour on this, it won't change much after that amount of time. You should end up with about 6 cups of liquid. If you have less, add some water so that you have 6 cups.
- You're going to cook the pasta as if it was risotto. That means stirring constantly and slowly adding more liquid as you go. Here's the step-by-step for that:
- Keep the stock on the stove over medium low heat. Add two ladles of stock to the pot with the onions and garlic.
- Put all of the pasta in the pot with the onions and garlic and stir constantly.
- As the water boils and is absorbed into the pasta you will need to add more, ladle by ladle until the pasta is done. This should take about 5-6 cups and about 20 minutes.
- Halfway through this process add the salt and corn kernels that you cut off. Keep stirring and keep adding liquid as needed. There is a lot of starch in the pot so it will stick and burn if you walk away from it.
- Check the pasta and make sure it's al dente. Don't give up, I promise you will get there. Add a little more liquid and cook a little longer if it's not there yet. It's OK if you run out of stock and need to add water (if you do, try to get it boiling or at least hot before you add it - microwaves or electric tea kettles come in handy for this).
- When the pasta is done cooking take it off the heat. Stir in the chevre and tomatoes.
- Slice the chilies into tiny rounds and serve them on the side so people can choose their own level of heat. Be careful not to touch your eyes (or anywhere else) after you touch the chilies!