There are nights, as we make our way upstairs to bed, that I am overcome with tiredness. A tiredness that makes each step incredibly difficult to take.
Okay, every night I'm tired. I'm not exactly known as one of those full of energy types.
There are times when I fall asleep within a few minutes of getting into that beautiful, amazing place known as bed.
Other nights, however, my brain does the opposite of shutting off. I become incredibly awake. Happy and awake.
So when this occurs, I enjoy "demonstrating my awakeness," a phrase coined by Seth. Perhaps by engaging in one or more of the following.
-Initiating vigorous, contentious conversation
-Using a cheerful, loud voice
-Continuing conversations that were previously over
-Asking a million questions
-Discussing the episode of television we are watching
-Snorting in his face
-Walking to the other side of the bed, getting in his face, and saying hi
After numerous "demonstrations" and a subsequent reprimand to go to sleep, I usually decide to read. But there are times when I put this silent, private awake time to good use. And think about food. Glorious, glorious food.
Like, for instance, some dumplings. Dumplings stuffed with lime-scented cotija, corn, scallions, and jalapeno. Dumplings coated in a coconut milk and corn broth, infused with the flavors of ginger and garlic and lime. "Demonstrating my awakeness" might not always lead to my desired outcome (Seth joining me in my awakeness), but at least some good can come of it.
For the corn stock:
husk of 5 corns
1/2 teaspoon peppercorns
1/2 teaspoon coriander seeds
small red onion, halved
For the corn:
4 ears of corn, husked
For the coconut and corn broth:
5 garlic cloves, minced
2 teaspoons grated ginger
extra virgin olive oil
1 cup corn broth
1 cup coconut milk
zest and juice of 1 small lime
1/2 teaspoon fish sauce
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
kosher salt, to taste
freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1/2 cup fresh basil, chiffonade
sprinkle more cotija for serving
For the corn scallion dumplings:
the cooked kernels from 4 ears of corn
1/2 teaspoon lime zest
1 tablespoon lime juice
2 chopped scallions
1/4 cup cotija cheese, crumbled
1 minced jalapeno
1 package wonton wrappers (I made about 40 dumplings)
To make the corn stock:
Place everything in a large pot and cover with water. Cover with lid, set over medium heat. Simmer for 1-2 hours. Strain.
To make the corn:
Cook the corn using your preferred method. I just stuck them in a 400 degree oven and let them roast for about 15 minutes.
Heat some oil in a saute pan on low. Add the garlic and ginger and saute for about a minute, until fragrant. Pour in 1 cup of the corn stock, coconut milk, lime juice and zest, fish sauce, and coriander. Simmer for just a few minutes. Adjust salt and pepper to taste. Finish with a sprinkling of fresh basil and cotija cheese.
To make the corn scallion dumplings:
Place the cooked corn kernels, lime juice, lime zest, scallions, cotija, jalapeno and black pepper in a bowl. Toss together. Take a wonton wrapper and place in the palm of your hand. Place ½ tablespoon of the corn scallion mixture in the middle. Dab water around two adjacent sides of the wrapper, then bring up the other two sides of the wrapper to form a triangle. Bring a large pot of water to boil. Add 4-5 dumplings and cook (about 1-3 minutes). Remove the cooked dumplings and repeat. Serve with broth.