friday feed: esquites

A few weeks ago, we went on vacation to Key West for our wedding anniversary. There is a little cuban place right around the corner from where we always stay in Key West (we feel like locals there!), called Paseo. Paseo means walk, stroll or ride. I am convinced it means you “stroll” back to your guesthouse because you are so full when you leave. One of the things we ordered was this grilled corn, and it reminded me of a recipe I tried from  of the Food Network: Esquites. Esquites means snack, and these little corn cups are frequently sold by street vendors in Mexico.

This little cup is full of flavor and the creamy cheese topped with fresh cilantro is the prefect presentation for your Cinco de Mayo celebration. Enjoy!


Cooking Tip: To cut the corn off of the cob, use 2 bowls, one large and one small. Turn the small bowl upside down inside the large one. Cut the husk off the cob and set the flat end (vertically) on the small bowl. Run your knife down the cob to cut off the corn. All the corn falls into the bowl, ready to mix with your ingredients! 



Creamy Corn Cups (“Esquites”)

Recipe courtesy Marcela Valladolid

Prep Time:
10 min
Inactive Prep Time:
Cook Time:
7 min
4 servings


  • 4 ears sweet corn, husked and silks removed
  • 4 tablespoons mayonnaise or Mexican sour cream
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
  • 6 tablespoons crumbled queso fresco or mild feta cheese
  • Ground chili powder, for sprinkling
  • Salt, for sprinkling
  • Lime wedges, for serving, optional


Bring a large saucepan of salted water to a boil over medium-high heat. Add the corn and cook until tender, about 5 to 7 minutes. Using tongs, transfer the corn to a platter and allow them to cool slightly. Using a serrated knife, remove the kernels from the corn. Divide the corn between 4 individual cups or small glasses. Put 1 tablespoon mayonnaise and 1 tablespoon butter in each glass. Sprinkle with cheese, chili powder, and salt. Serve with the lime wedges, if desired.

Recipe Alteration: This is really good with fresh cilantro sprinkled on top!