Corn Blinis Filled with Brandade
- 1/2 pound salt cod, prepared as in the above recipe through the flaking stage
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 medium red rose potato, peeled, halved, boiled until very soft, and mashed
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 1 1/2 teaspoons lemon juice
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 2 1/4 cups fresh or frozen corn kernels (about 4 large ears)
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
- 1 medium shallot, minced
- 1/4 cup heavy cream
- 1 large egg
- 1 large egg yolk
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon white pepper
- 3 1/2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons milk
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped parsley
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
- 1 cup Crema (recipe below), for serving
To make the brandade: In a large, heavy saucepan, warm the olive oil over low heat. Add the garlic and cook, stirring for about 3 minutes, or until the aroma is released. Add the flaked cod and stir vigorously for about 1 minute, until it is well broken up. Add the mashed potato and cream and continue stirring energetically. Stir in the lemon juice and the pepper (taste for salt but, since the cod is salty to begin with, it will probably not need any more).
Work the mixture until it a very fluffy consistency. Keep the brandade warm in the top of a double boiler, covered, over slightly simmering water while you make the blinis.
To make the blinis: In a medium saucepan full of boiling water, cook the corn for 2 minutes. Drain well and dry on paper towels. In a large heavy skillet, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the shallot and cook for 4 to 5 minutes, stirring, until it is softened and slightly golden. Add the corn, cover and cook for about 4 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the corn is tender.
Add the cream and bring to the boil. Cook until the mixture is almost dry, about 5 minutes. Scrape the mixture into a blender and puree until very smooth, scraping down the sides of the container as necessary. Press the mixture through a fine sieve into a bowl, pressing hard on the solids to extract all the flavor and juices. Discard the solids. In the clean blender, combine the egg, egg yolk, salt, white pepper, and flour. Blend until smooth, add the milk and the corn puree and blend again. Transfer the batter to a large measuring cup and stir in the parsley.
In a large cast-iron skillet, heat 1 teaspoon of the vegetable oil over medium heat until very hot. Make the blini by pouring about 2 tablespoons of batter into the pan for each one, and cook for about 1 minute on each side (they should each be 4 inches in diameter; you will probably only be able to fit 2 in the pan each time). Transfer the blini to a plate in a warm oven as they are done and continue making blini, adding a teaspoon of oil to the pan for each batch, until you have used all the batter. Place one or two blini on each of 6 warm plates and place a large dollop of brandade on one side of each. Fold over the other side to cover. Drizzle the crepes with some of the crema and serve immediately.
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