Nature flicked the switch on Autumn this week. The wind, the rain, the mud, the half light have all been turned on and turned up. (I like to think the mud switch is one of those red ones that has to be kept under a hinged Perspex box so calamitous is its deployment.)

Come February I am sick of this weather. But now, it feels quite cozy. An excuse for fires, blankets and stews. Or, as today, an excuse for my latest addiction – creamed corn. I served it with courgette, roast hake and nasturtium sauce at my September supper club. But those late summer days feel a world away already. Today calls for something far more warming. And that’s what’s so interesting about sweetcorn: the harvest starts in late summer when you want sweetcorn for salsa or to barbecue, but the last pickings are made in muddy wellies and thick socks with recipes for soup on your mind. Today, I pair my addictive creamed corn with mushrooms, crispy kale and a garlic and lemon breadcrumb – a perfect veggie supper to enjoy by the fire in your favourite woolens.

(Incidentally, the next supper club is on Friday 25thOctober. There are just SIX spaces left, at time of posting, so book quick if you’d like to come – which would obviously be lovely. The menu will be all of autumn on a plate – pumpkin, duck, kale, pears, chestnuts… yum. Full menu, info and booking here.)

Creamed sweetcorn, mushrooms, crispy kale & garlic crumbs

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 30 minutes

Serves 2

Creamed sweetcorn, mushrooms, crispy kale & garlic crumbs

Warming, hearty and accidentally healthy mid-week meal. The sweet creaminess of the corn is offset by the crunch of breadcrumbs and the savouriness of mushrooms. To make it vegan, just omit the cream and use oil instead of butter in the breadcrumbs.

  • 400g sweetcorn kernels (thawed if using frozen)
  • 2 tbsp double cream (optional)
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 300g mushrooms
  • For the kale:
  • 50g kale
  • 1tsp olive oil
  • Pinch chilli flakes
  • For the crumb:
  • 15g butter (or olive oil if you want to make it vegan)
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 30g panko breadcrumbs
  • 1 lemon, zested
  • 1 tbsp chopped parsley
  1. Boil a pan of water, add the sweetcorn and cook for 5 minutes. If you are using fresh kernels just cut from the cob, cook for 5 minutes extra. Drain the sweetcorn, return it to the pan then whizz until smooth with a handheld blender. Add the cream and a big pinch of salt and stir together. Keep warm on a low heat whilst you make the rest. (It also reheats well if you want make it ahead of time.)
  2. For the mushrooms, heat the oil in a large frying pan whilst you slice the mushrooms. I like to leave them quite thick – 5mm ish. Add the mushrooms to the pan and cook over a high heat for 5-10 minutes until they have released their juices and are starting to caramalise. Don’t rush this stage, the mushrooms need to be really dark and reduced.
  3. Meanwhile, pre-heat the oven to 190C. Tear the kale into 1-inch pieces, discarding the fat end of the stalks, and toss in the oil, chilli flakes and a pinch of salt. Massage the oil into the kale to make sure every bit is coated. Arrange on a large baking tray so there is space between each piece of kale. Roast in the oven for 5 minutes until the kale is crisp but not browned. Remove and set aside. By this time your mushrooms should be done too so turn the heat right down to keep them warm whilst you finish up.
  4. For the breadcrumbs, in another frying pan, melt the butter then add all the other ingredients, plus a pinch of salt and fry for 2-3 minutes until the breadcrumbs are golden brown and the garlic aroma has filled the kitchen. Set aside.
  5. Re-heat the corn if needed then spoon to onto two plates. Pile the mushrooms on top then scatter over the crispy kale and the breadcrumbs. Serve immediately or the kale and breadcrumbs will go soggy.
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