Deirdre Buryk’s curly corn “ribs” are made with a simple marinade of puréed garlic and fried until they curl like the limbs of an octopus. They’re served with cilantro-heavy zhoug, a hot herb sauce common in Yemen that’s similar to chimichurri but made with spices familiar to the Middle East.
Curly Corn Ribs with Fresh Zhoug and Shishito Peppers
- 4 cobs corn husked
- 4 cloves garlic minced
- 4 cups vegetable oil for frying
- 2 shishito peppers seeds removed and thinly sliced
- 1 tsp flaky sea salt approx
- 1 cup fresh cilantro leaves
- 4 cloves garlic
- 1 tsp ground cardamom
- ½ tsp ground cumin
- ½ tsp kosher salt approx
- 1 shishito pepper seeds removed and roughly chopped
- ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
- In a mortar, add cilantro, garlic, cardamom, cumin and kosher salt; press and grind with a pestle until a rough paste forms. Add shishito pepper; continue grinding. Pour in olive oil; press and stir until mixture forms a pesto-like consistency. Season with salt, to taste; set aside.
- Rub corn cobs with garlic until coated. Using a sharp chef’s knife, cut cobs lengthwise into quarters. Marinate at room temperature for at least 1 hour.
- In a deep fryer or Dutch oven over medium-high heat, heat oil until a deep fryer thermometer reads 360°F. Using a slotted spoon, carefully lower corn ribs, 1 at a time and up to 4 in total, into oil; fry, turning occasionally, until cobs begin to curl and kernels turn golden brown, 5 to 10 minutes. Remove to a paper towel-lined plate to drain. Repeat with remaining corn.
- Plate cobs with shishito peppers and large dollops of zhoug. Finish with salt, to taste.