Fresh Corn Cakes with Parmesan and Chives

Adapted from The Essential New York Times Cookbook

To know me is to know that I love any excuse to serve pancakes for dinner. I found this recipe in Amanda Hesser’s recently published cookbook, then altered it a bit to create pancakes with a looser, creamier batter. I loved the result – savory cakes filled with a generous heap of crunchy fresh corn – and hope you will, too. This recipe makes about eight 4-inch pancakes, so it’s an easy lunch or a light vegetarian supper. For a hungry family of 4 or more, double the recipe or serve as a side dish.

  • 2 cups corn kernels (about 4 ears), see tips
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/4 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 cup yellow corn meal
  • 1/4 cup buttermilk
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh chives, plus more for serving
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 teaspoons canola oil, divided
  • Creme fraiche, for serving

  • In a large bowl, combine the corn kernels, egg, flour, cheese, corn meal, buttermilk, chives, salt and pepper. Mix until evenly moistened.
  • Heat 2 teaspoons of the canola oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add about 1/4 cup of the batter to the hot skillet, pressing it lightly to create a round pancake. You may have to push loose kernels in around the edges. Cook for 3 to 4 minutes, or until you can easily slide a spatula underneath the pancake without it starting to come apart. Carefully flip the pancake and cook the other side until golden and firm, about another 3 to 4 minutes. The cakes should be lightly browned on each side and hold together neatly. Remove the cakes from the skillet and add the remaining 2 teaspoons of oil to make the second and final batch. Repeat the steps above.
  • Serve hot, topped with creme fraiche and chives.
  • Quick Tips
  • 1. When I set out to make this recipe, I actually had another in mind. As such, I only had two ears of fresh corn. I stripped the fresh corn using one of those cool little corn zipper tools, then I added another cup of frozen corn since I didn’t have time to run out to the market. If corn is out of season, try using frozen in this recipe (thaw it first).
  • 2. These would go nicely in the lunchbox!

Preparation time: 10 minute(s)

Cooking time: 20 minute(s)

Number of servings (yield): 4




3 responses to “Fresh Corn Cakes with Parmesan and Chives”

  1. Alicia, this looks so good ! Thanks for giving me another great idea with all the delicious corn we have around.
    Must try this one soon.

  2. Krista says:

    Love these! Have to say though I needed to add 1 more egg and a bit more corn meal to hold them together in the pan! Would be so good with red pepper or crab! I also used the corn meal from the bulk bin at whole foods and it added a bit of crunch. ( It was a very rough milled corn meal)
    Thanks for another great twist on what to do with corn!

    • Alicia says:

      Great ideas, Krista! I did find that I had to work with the batter a bit to keep it together in the pan. Not quite as easy to work with as regular pancake batter, but mighty tasty for your effort. I will be checking out the rough milled corn meal from Whole Foods…mine is rather fine and I’m almost out. Thanks for your comment.

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