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The Food Processor

Corn-Jalapeno Pancakes Are Smashing

August 27, 1987|JANE SALZFASS FREIMAN | Freiman is a New York-based food writer

Last summer I shared a house at the beach with several friends who are food professionals. Each weekend someone was responsible for cooking dinner, which invariably included fresh corn-on-the-cob.

One Sunday morning, there were half a dozen or more ears of corn left over from dinner and at least four fresh jalapeno chiles. Since Sunday brunch was the last meal of the weekend, we needed to use up the food, which also included half a sweet red pepper and a few green onions. Whereas many cooks would add the leftovers to omelets or frittatas , I came up with the idea of pancakes, and two of us set to work on the batter. The pancakes were such a smash that they were requested every weekend thereafter, and all of us planned to use the recipe in our respective books.

A Pancake Version

Here is my version of the pancakes, which might be served for brunch with bacon or sausage, but which also makes a terrific garnish for roasted and barbecued meat and poultry. Since a number of vegetables are included, the pancakes can replace a vegetable in a meal (as potato pancakes would), and I like to serve them with sour cream.

Jalapenos vary in strength so it never is easy to predict how hot they will be. I like the heat of jalapenos but their number can be reduced to one or two, if desired. If they are not available in the market, or if a milder flavor is desired, substitute half a green pepper.

Vegetables for pancakes are processed and simply left in the machine. Eggs and other ingredients for the batter then are added to the vegetables and loosened by pulsing with milk. In this way, the vegetables are processed finely enough to permit the pancakes to hold together when cooked. Only corn kernels are stirred in whole. This consecutive processing technique works neatly for this recipe and eliminates the steps of adding, processing, then removing each ingredient.


2 ears fresh corn, husked

4 medium jalapeno chiles, halved, seeded and cored

1/2 sweet red pepper, cored and seeded

3 medium green onions, trimmed

1 egg

1/2 cup flour

1/4 cup cornmeal

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 tablespoon vinegar

3/4 cup milk


Sour cream

Heat 4 quarts water to boiling. Add corn and boil 2 to 3 minutes or until tender. Cool. Trim kernels off cob, then discard cob and set 1 cup kernels aside.

Insert metal blade in dry processor. Mince jalapenos by adding to machine with motor on. Cut red pepper into 1-inch pieces, then add to machine and pulse until minced. Change to medium (4-mm) slicing disc. Dangle-slice green onion bottoms by lowering carefully through slicer. Set tops aside for another use.

To ingredients in container, add egg, flour, cornmeal, baking powder, salt and vinegar. Pulse several times to mix. Add milk and process with half-second pulses until mixture forms smooth batter. Transfer to bowl.

Stir corn kernels into batter. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in large skillet. Stir batter well and drop by 1/8-cups onto skillet to form 2-inch-diameter pancakes, distributing corn and other vegetables evenly over surface of pancakes. Cook about 2 minutes or until bottoms of pancakes are set, then turn and cook until second side is set. Transfer to paper towels, then to foil and keep warm.

Repeat to cook all pancakes. Pancakes can be reheated in foil or served at room temperature with dabs of sour cream. Makes about 2 dozen.

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