A 10,000 year old history, a food for ancient gods, and a modern notoriety for headline making schisms, sweet summer corn remains irresistible. Biting into a sunshine yellow ear with its even number of rows and 800 kernels is an All-American tradition. Grilled and cut from the cob, maize is arguably even better.


cuisine Mexican
difficulty Simple
season Summer
serves 6


  • 6 ears corn, peel back the husks and remove the silk and then fold the husk back over the corn
  • 2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 jalapeño, minced
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • Zest of 1 lime
  • Juice of 2 limes
  • 1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 1/4 cup cotija cheese, crumbled


  1. Prepare the grill.
  2. If using charcoal or wood, place the corn directly on the coals and lightly char each side. If using a gas grill, place the corn on the grate and turn when charred (will take slightly longer to char). Let cool until the husks can be handled.
  3. Mix the chili powder, salt, and pepper in a small dish.
  4. Remove the husks from the corn. To remove the corn from the cob, place an ear of corn on the tube part of a bundt pan and slice the corn from the cob with a CHEF'S KNIFE (the kernels will fall into the bundt pan). 
  5. Place the corn in a SERVING DISH and toss with the melted butter, the zest, lime juice and cilantro. 
  6. Just before serving, add the crumbled cheese and gently toss together. Sprinkle with a bit of chili powder if deserved.
  7. May be served immediately or held at room temperature for several hours.