Grilled Mexican Street Corn Salad

Chef Wes Rowe is the acclaimed burger cowboy behind the popular San Francisco Wes Burger pop-up and a master of barbecue. He whips up a mean side dish, too, so grab the last of the sweet summer corn and churn out a batch of grilled Mexican street corn salad. It's perfect next to a burger...and even better on top of one.

I love this recipe because it's a huge crowd-pleaser, which I think has a lot to do with the use of wood smoke. The recipe is inspired by elote, Mexican street corn, but I have found that smoking it over mesquite charcoal (or using wood chips in addition to regular charcoal) really transforms the dish. This recipe is super simple — the only work is grilling the corn and slicing it off the cob. Everything comes together real fast after that. I tend to prep all my other ingredients in a big bowl while I grill the corn. That way, you can choose to serve the dish hot or wait and serve it cold. I have also been using it as a topping for burgers and hot dogs lately, which makes it even better for tailgating and potlucks.

Grilled Mexican Street Corn Salad
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  • 4 cobs of corn
  • 3 tablespoons Mexican crema
  • juice of 1 lime
  • 2 teaspoons dark chili powder
  • 1/3 cup crumbled cotija cheese
  • 1 bunch cilantro
  • 1 bunch scallions
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh or dried epazote (optional)
  • 2 jalapeños
  1. Mix all ingredients except corn and jalapeños in a medium bowl and reserve. This can be done hours in advance.
  2. Grill shucked corn and jalapeños till evenly charred, then remove kernels into bowl with reserved ingredients and add diced jalapeño.
  3. Mix to combine. Serve as a side or on top of hot dogs or burgers.
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