Mexican Street Corn Salad also known as Esquites (in Mexico) is a creamy warm corn salad filled with fresh herbs, spices, and cotija cheese. This corn salad makes for a perfect side dish to compliment any Mexican dinner.
Remove the corn kernels off the cooked ears of corn and set to the side.
Heat a frying pan with the salted butter. Add the corn kernels, lime zest and juice, and green onions. Cook for 5 minutes until warm.
Turn the heat off the burner. Then mix in the mayonnaise, crumbled Cotija cheese, fresh cilantro and chili powder. Mix well until incorporated. Let sit on burner for 5 minutes, mixing periodically.
Before serving sprinkle a little cayenne pepper if desired on top as well as additional chili powder and cotija cheese. Divide evenly among plates and enjoy.
Cheese - If you can't find Cotija cheese you can use feta cheese. I know it sounds crazy, but trust me it works. You can also use Queso Fresco which is another crumbling cheese but is softer to touch.
Corn - If you don't have fresh corn on the cob on hand you can use 16 oz. of frozen corn. Cook corn in skillet just like you would with the fresh corn until thawed and then proceed with the steps.
Leftover Corn on the Cob - If you already have ears of leftover corn on the cob cooked, you can easily remove the corn kernels from the cob and heat the corn with all the remaining ingredients.
Mayonnaise - If you do not have mayonnaise on hand you can use the more traditional Mexican Crema --it's a very mild version of sour cream.
Do Not Over Cook - It is important that you do not over heat/over cook the corn once the mayonnaise reaches the pan. The mayonnaise will break down and become extremely oily if over cooked. You will notice my recipe calls for you to turn off the burner and mix in the mayonnaise. If you find the skillet is too hot, and the mayonnaise is starting to separate remove the skillet off the heat immediately.
Zest a Lime - To zest, you simply rub a whole lime on the surface of the grater until you reach the white portion of the lime. Then move the grater to another section of green and continue to grate the skin off. The key is to keep the citrus whole as it is much easier to grate.
Freeze Lime Juice & Zest - Place leftover lime zest in a freezer safe bag (mark contents plus date zested) and freeze until you need some for a recipe. This goes the same with leftover lime juice. A great way to use up limes before they go bad and easily access them for future recipes.