This pie is well known in Chile as “Pastel de Choclo” and as the picture shows, it is delicious! It is often made around the month of September, when fresh corn can be found at any “Feria” (farmers market) in any Chilean city.
My mom’s recipe is very special and I’ll share with you gladly because I think it is worthy 😉 Here it goes:
- 3 small onions, chopped
- Ground beef (the amount of two steaks)
- 1/2 cup vegetable oil
- 1/2 teaspoon of red pepper, cumin, salt, parsley and oregano
- 2 cloves of garlic
- A handful of olives (5 oz)
- A handful of raisins
- 2 or 3 eggs
- Salt and red pepper
- 4 or 5 ears of corn (1 kg)
- 1/ cup sugar (or more, to taste)
Put onion in hot water and bring it to a boil. Take away from the heat and throw water away. Add ground meat, oil and spices (red pepper, cumin, salt, parsley and oregano) and cook on high for about 10 minutes, covered. If you notice it is too dry (although unlikely), add a tiny bit of boiled water, but avoid this if possible.
Leave to cool. It is a good tip to do this a day before you plan to use it (leave it in the fridge).
Boil the eggs and cut into rounds.
Leave the raisins in hot water.
Grate the corn (to a purée) with a little milk if necessary. Cook the mixture at a low temperature and add milk to taste, stirring always, for about 20 minutes. Add sugar to taste. Add basil, preferable fresh and chopped, to be boiled along with the purée. Be careful to not burn it!
Place the meat mixture in an oven proof pan. Spread the raisins and eggs on top of it. Add the corn puréeon on top of all that. Sprinkle a little sugar on top and bake for about 10 minutes in a hot oven.
In Chile, we use a kind of starchy corn. In the USA, it is preferable to use ‘field corn’ and if that is not available, you can add corn meal to any other type of corn to thicken the mixture.