Corn blini with shishito and Green Zebra tomato salsa

Time 1 hour 40 minutes
Yields Makes about 24 blini
Corn blini with shishito and Green Zebra tomato salsa
(Los Angeles Times)



Heat a well-seasoned stove-top grill pan over medium-high heat until hot. Brush the tomatoes, peppers and green onions with the olive oil. Grill the vegetables, turning them to brown all sides, about 3 to 4 minutes.


Remove the vegetables from the pan and allow them to cool. Cut the tomatoes into small dice and place in a small bowl. Cut the tops off the peppers and chop; add to the bowl. Chop the green onions and add.


Stir in the garlic, cilantro, lime juice and salt. Let stand 15 minutes to allow the flavors to blend. (Makes 1 cup.)

Blini and assembly


Heat the milk to simmering. Remove it from the heat and stir in the sugar and salt. Cool to lukewarm.


Sprinkle the yeast over warm water and stir until dissolved. Let the mixture stand until the yeast begins to bubble, then stir it into the milk mixture.


Combine the flour and cornmeal in a bowl. Add the yeast mixture and whisk until smooth. Cover and let stand 1 hour or until batter doubles in volume. (Prepare the salsa while the batter rises.)


Stir down the batter and beat in the egg yolk, butter, creme fraiche and corn. Fold in the egg whites just until mixed.


Brush a large nonstick skillet with the clarified butter and heat over medium heat until hot. For each blini, scoop out from the bottom of the bowl 1 scant tablespoon batter and spoon it into the skillet. Fry 3 or 4 blini at a time. Cook until golden and set, about 1 1/2 minutes, then turn and cook another 1 to 2 minutes until golden.


Remove the blini to a paper towel and continue to cook blini until all the batter has been used.


To serve, place four blini on each plate, spoon a generous teaspoon of shishito and Green Zebra tomato salsa onto each blini, then top each with a dollop of creme fraiche.

Shishito peppers are available at Japanese markets and farmers markets. Green Zebra tomatoes are available at farmers markets. You may substitute any firm green tomato. Make the salsa while the blini batter rises.

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