pot luck

Deconstructed Mexican Street Corn

Remember that time I told you that you might get three posts in a week.  And then only got one? Blogging is hard these days.  I can’t even say I don’t have the time or energy.  I’m just lazy.  And I’d rather spend my evenings catching up reading about all of you than sharing my own boring daily haps.

We did manage to get out of the house on a week night (gasp!) with Edison to enjoy dinner with friends a couple weeks ago.  Having a kid that goes to bed at 7pm makes week night plans awfully challenging.  But, we made plans to be prepared – and though dinner didn’t start until 6:30, we managed!

It was so much fun to get out of the house and break up our routine a little bit.  Plus, Eddie got to meet three more of our friends!  I hadn’t seen them since before Eddie was born.  Yikes.  We literally had plans with two of them the week Eddie was born, but I wasn’t feeling so hot, so we canceled in hopes of doing it that weekend.  But then, Eddie had to go and be born on Friday and totally hijack our lives.  The nerve.

We then had plans with them to enjoy dinner in their new home a couple months ago and then Eddie had to go and get sick for like a month straight, so once again, we had to cancel.  I mean, the kid was literally shitting on people.  I can’t take my explosive baby into a new home!

But, we finally made it happen.  And it was so much fun.

In the spirit of Cinco de Mayo (since our dinner date was on May 5th!) we obviously had a Mexican themed evening.  As I was madly searching the interwebs for a stellar side dish to bring, I stumbled across this Mexican Street Corn recipe.  Yes, please.

I didn’t want the hassle of grilling corn, nor did I want to expect our gracious hosts to do it for me, so I decided I would just deconstruct it into a yummy side dish!

Deconstructed Mexican Street Corn - mwn

Deconstructed Mexican Street Corn

2 Tbs olive oil
4 c frozen yellow corn, thawed
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 jalapeño, seeded and minced
3 Tbs crumbled feta cheese, plus more for garnishing*
2 Tbs mayo
2 Tbs fresh chopped cilantro
1 1/2 tsp ancho or guajillo chili powder
Juice from two limes
1/4 tsp salt

Heat oil in a large skillet.  Add corn and stir occasionally until toasted.  Add garlic and remove from heat to cool.

In a bowl, combine the toasted corn mixture with remaining ingredients.  Garnish with feta cheese.

You can easily adjust the amount of cheese, mayo, cilantro, chili powder, lime juice, and salt to satisfy your taste buds.  Enjoy!

*You could use cotija, but I couldn’t find it for the life of me.  Feta was a great sub!

 I think this would be a great dish to bring to any BBQ this summer.  Lots of flavor and it can be served at room temperature!



Mexican Chocolate Caramel Trifle

More movement at work.  One of our specialists transferred to another branch, so of course we celebrated with a pot luck.  Of course.  The theme?  Mexican food!

Our last pot luck had a Backyard BBQ theme and I took my Raspberry Cream Cheese Pie.  Which was quite the hit.  I think that’s what I like taking dessert, it’s almost always the most popular dish. 😉

I was told immediately that bringing flan wasn’t an option.  Which was fine, because I never considered it an option anyway!  Yuck.  I thought about bringing some sort of tres leches dessert, but thought that would be too predictable.  Combine that with my recent obsession with trifles and this is what you have – a Mexican Chocolate Caramel Trifle.

I essentially took this Mexican Chocolate Cake recipe and with the inspiration of the addition of Caramel Cream Frosting in this one created the latest and greatest pot luck addition.  That second recipe essentially assured me that caramel would be an okay add-in to Mexican Chocolate Cake.  I’ve never made a cake with cayenne and balsamic vinegar, so it was a little intimating!  And with the added direction of my love for the infamous “Better Than Sex Cake” I thought I’d have a winner.

Mexican Chocolate Caramel Trifle - mwn

Mexican Chocolate Caramel Trifle
For the cake:
1 package chocolate cake mix, batter prepared according to package directions
2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
1 Tbs balsamic vinegar

For the trifle:
cake prepared above
5.1 oz package chocolate pudding
12 oz cool whip
1 jar (~12 oz) caramel ice cream topping
1 package toffee bits (I used Heath)

Stir cinnamon, cayenne, and balsamic vinegar into prepared cake batter.

Spread into prepared 9×11 baking dish and bake at 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes.

Allow cake to cool completely.

Prepare pudding as directed on package.

Cut cake (prepared above) into cubes.  Place half of the cubes into bottom of trifle dish; lightly pressing to fill in gaps.

Top with half of of the cool whip, pudding, caramel topping, and toffee bits.

Repeat layers.

Refrigerate until ready to serve.


PS. That’s the kind of picture you get when pictures are taken at night with no natural light and free photo editing software.  It’s also the kind of picture you get when your plan is to get “better” pictures in the morning before you take it to work – only to open the refrigerator and find that the caramel has mysteriously overflowed all over.  ALL OVER.  And you’re already running late to your 7:15am doctor’s appointment and the trifle dish is so darn sticky you spend any free moments you have (before dashing out the door) searching for a solution to transport your dessert and concoct an explanation for how atrocious your once-beautiful dessert looks.  “I swear it tastes good.”  The lesson learned: do not overfill your trifle dish, just because you have a little bit of “extra” caramel.  To avoid any waste, you’re better off eating the rest of the caramel topping with a spoon directly from the jar.