James and Julie Petrakis, husband-and-wife chef-owners of The Ravenous Pig and the new Cask & Larder, have just released a cookbook, The Ravenous Pig: Seasons of Florida ($35). My Orlando visit earlier this year ended just a few days before the new restaurant opened, but I had the chance to lunch at The Ravenous Pig and try the superb house-made charcuterie, mostarda, and pickles, along with a freshly baked pretzel.
The cookbook, divided by Florida’s growing seasons, is heavy on meat just like the menus at the restaurants. The Petrakis family also takes pastry seriously–there are enticing recipes for Gruyere biscuits and for fried “pigs tails”–their delicious homage to the funnel cake.
Dishes like lavender-and-fennel cured lardo, prime rib-eye steak with pickled cherry relish and Vidalia onion rings, or saffron chitarra (a long, flat pasta) with Florida spiny lobster are appealing weekend projects–these are not fast and furious weeknight meals. They’re for the home cook that likes building up a pantry of homemade condiments to use for future recipes.
However, the recipe I have chosen to share from The Ravenous Pig: Seasons of Florida is actually quite simple, and also happens to be vegan (below). A recent meal at the (now-closed) Cafe Sharaku in Fort Lauderdale included an exquisite corn soup, and it reminded me how much I love the pure flavor of fresh corn.
Cutting the kernels off the cob is the most time consuming part of this recipe for creamless creamed corn, but if you’re talking with a friend or listening to NPR, it goes by quickly. This is a great addition to your Thanksgiving table, whether or not anyone eats vegan.
Leave a comment here or on Facebook (Miami Dish) by Thursday at 4 p.m., about what you’re most looking forward to cooking for Thanksgiving, for a chance to win a copy of The Ravenous Pig: Seasons of Florida. Congrats to Elizabeth Williamson, who left a comment on this post, was randomly selected as the winner of the The Ravenous Pig: Seasons of Florida. Thanks to all who left comments here, on Facebook and on Twitter!
Creamless Creamed Corn
Used with permission of James and Julie Petrakis, authors of The Ravenous Pig: Seasons of Florida
My recipe notes: I got about seven cups of corn kernels from eight cobs. This recipe makes about four side servings, so you can double or triple it depending on your needs. This is a sweet recipe, so add less honey if you prefer your creamed corn less sweet or if you have really sweet Florida or Georgia corn. If you don’t eat honey, try agave syrup. The dish makes a nice foil for salty holiday dishes. For the double-boiler, I use a large (non-plastic) bowl that fits snugly over a stock pot.
Active time: About 30 minutes
4 cups fresh corn kernels, cut off the cob
Coarse salt, to taste
White pepper, to taste
1 tablespoon honey
½ teaspoon Tabasco
2 teaspoons sherry vinegar
1. Set up double boiler. (See my note above.)
2. Take 1 cup of corn kernels and puree until smooth in a blender. Strain the corn puree through a fine-mesh strainer.
3. Transfer corn puree to double boiler and heat, whisking constantly, until it becomes quite thick. Season with salt and white pepper, honey, Tabasco, and sherry vinegar.
4. Fold together the whole corn kernels and puree in double boiler.
5. Heat until whole kernels soften, about 6 or 7 minutes.