Khao Phot Ping
Pok Pok’s Grilled Corn with Salty Coconut Cream
“To my tastes, the corn in Thailand is, to be charitable, not awesome. But as soon as I tried this preparation from a vendor on the grounds of a Chiang Mai temple, I couldn’t wait to try it back home. The combination of rich, salty coconut cream infused with pandan leaf and America’s stunning sweet corn is so good it gives the mayo- and cheese-covered Mexican stuff a run for its money!”
– Andy Ricker, from the Khao Phot Ping recipe in Pok Pok: Food and Stories from the Streets, Homes, and Roadside Restaurants of Thailand
- 250g (1 cup) unsweetened coconut cream (preferably boxed)
- 10g (1 Tbsp) granulated sugar
- 3g (1 tsp) kosher salt
- 1 fresh or frozen pandan leaf, tied into a knot
- 6 large ears of corn, husked
- 6 lime wedges
- Combine the coconut cream, sugar, salt and pandan leaf in a small pot. It’s fine if the pandan leaf isn’t completely submerged.
- Set the pot over medium high heat, bring the mixture to a simmer (don’t let it boil), then decrease the heat to low.
- Cook until the cream has thickened slightly and is infused with pandan flavor, about 10 minutes.
- Remove and discard the pandan leaf.
- (Optional) Bring a large pot of water to a boil, add the corn and cook until it’s tender and no longer raw, about 8 minutes. Drain well.
- Prepare a grill, preferably charcoal, to cook over medium heat or preheat a lightly oiled grill pan over medium heat on the stovetop.
- Grill the corn until it’s lightly charred in spots and nearly cooked through, occasionally turning the ears.
- Using a pastry brush, generously brush the corn with the coconut cream mixture. Grill for an additional 5 to 10 minutes, turning occasionally.
- Serve the corn with a drizzle of the remaining cream mixture and lime wedges for squeezing.
Notes for success
- The cookbook recommends using boxed coconut cream as I've found that it tends to be the next best thing to making it from scratch.
- The corn can be boiled up to several days in advance but be sure to shock the corn in ice water immediately after boiling.
- The coconut cream would be delicious served over rice or with spicy grilled chicken or pork. It would also make an excellent accompaniment with tropical fruits such as mango, banana, or pineapple. (The Salty Coconut Cream is also used in the book’s recipe for sticky rice with mango, with the sugar and salt decreased slightly since it is being served with sweet ripe fruit.)
- Pandan leaves can be found in specialty Asian grocery stores. The leaves can be used to flavor steamed rice, in dessert preparations, and makes for a refreshing iced tea.