Butter and salt are really all you need when corn is at its peak during the summer, but this twist on a summer side takes those flavors to the next level. The corn gets brushed with nutty, caramelized brown butter, then rolled in buttery, salty shortbread cookies crumbs. Every bite is bursting with sweet, savory and crunchy flavor.
Melt the butter in a small saute pan or skillet over medium-low heat, swirling occasionally, until the milk solids in the butter have turned golden brown and the butter smells toasty, about 10 minutes. Immediately transfer the melted butter and any browned bits to a small heatproof bowl.
Meanwhile, microwave the unhusked ears of corn together until soft to touch, 5 to 7 minutes. Transfer to a cutting board or plate to cool for about 4 minutes.
Put the cookies in a mini food processor or large resealable bag. Pulse the cookies for about 10 seconds or crush with a rolling pin until they resemble the texture of sand. The cookie crumbs should yield about 2/3 cup. Transfer the cookie crumbs to a plate, add 1/2 teaspoon salt and mix together.
Remove the corn husks and silks. Working one ear at a time, brush the corn with the browned butter, making sure to scoop up the caramelized bits that have sunk to the bottom of the bowl, then roll in the cookie crumbs. Transfer to a platter or large plate and sprinkle with the remaining cookie crumbs and a few grinds of pepper. Serve immediately.