Someone asked me this morning what we eat for breakfast in Australia. I told them that really there wasn’t anything particularly distinctive about our morning meal. We eat cereal, eggs, bacon, pancakes, muffins, oatmeal (though we call it porridge) - all those things people in other places eat. And then I remembered these corncakes. They’re not the sort of thing you’d eat every day (though certainly you could) but more likely on the weekend, when you’ve got a bit of time up your sleeve and an inclination to linger…
Breakfast is far and away my favourite meal. I think my inability to sleep in is due in part to some kind of subconscious excitement about waking up and getting to eat (again). It almost doesn’t matter what what's on my plate, whether I’m alone or with others, there’s something intrinsically optimistic about the first meal of the day. Maybe it’s the light, which, in combination with a cup of coffee, renders anything - even a rubbery, reheated rectangle of eggs and bacon on an international flight - with a golden glow.
This particular breakfast feels very Sydney, perhaps because it’s a Bill Granger recipe and his style of cooking is very much of that city – clean, simple flavours, unfussy, beautiful to look at… Eating his food is somehow like diving into an ocean pool, or watching the sunlight glitter on the harbour.
I’m not in Sydney or even summer right now…
But soon(ish) I will return and when I do, I’m making these. Straight after a swim.
from a recipe by Bill Granger
Though these taste amazing first thing in the morning they're by no means restricted to breakfast. You could just as easily polish off a plate for lunch, or else make slightly smaller cakes (swapping out the avocado and bacon for sweet chilli sauce and sour cream) to serve with drinks later on in the day.
525g (2 2/3 cups) fresh (cut from 3 large cobs) or frozen corn kernels
1 small red onion, chopped
1/2 cup chopped coriander (cilantro)
125g (1 cup) flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
vegetable oil for frying
2 ripe avocados
bacon (enough for four)
Preheat oven to 120 deg C (250 deg F). Place 2 cups of corn kernels and onion, eggs, coriander, flour, baking powder, salt and pepper in a food processor and process til combined. Place the mixture in a large bowl, add remaining corn and stir to combine.
Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a pan over medium to high heat. When the oil is hot, drop in 2 heaped tablespoons of mix per corncake into the pan and cook in batches of three for one minute each side. Drain on paper towels and keep warm in the oven while you make the rest.
Serve with bacon and a few thick slices of avocado, a couple of grinds of black pepper and a drizzle of lime juice.