Visitors to my restaurant in Las Vegas order this more than any other side dish, and when we take it off the menu, diners truly get upset . . . people travel especially for it! It’s a decadent side and a perfect partner to meat or chicken. When it’s in season, the sweet flavor of fresh white corn is especially nice here.
YIELD: SERVES 4 TO 6
SERVE WITH: WILTED BABY KALE, SPICY TURKEY POLPETONE
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1⁄4 pound pancetta, diced
- 1 shallot, chopped
- 1 medium fennel bulb, stalks discarded, chopped
- 1⁄4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
- 1 (16-ounce) bag sweet corn, thawed, or kernels from 8 ears fresh corn
- 3⁄4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1⁄2 cup mascarpone cheese
- 1 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
- 1⁄4 cup chopped fresh basil
- 1⁄4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the pancetta and cook, stirring often with a wooden spoon, until the pancetta is crispy and golden brown, about 5 minutes. Add the shallot, fennel, and red pepper flakes, and cook an additional 3 minutes, or until the vegetables are softened.
Stir in the corn and salt, and mix well to combine and warm through. Add 3 tablespoons of water, then fold in the mascarpone and Parmigiano-Reggiano. Heat just to a simmer, then remove from the heat. Stir in the basil and black pepper, and serve.
Reprinted from Giada’s Italy. Copyright © 2018 by GDL Foods Inc. Photographs by Aubrie Pick. Published by Clarkson Potter/Publishers, an imprint of Penguin Random House LLC.