Clean the jalapeños and remove seeds. Dice and set aside.
Clean the red pepper then slice and dice half of it. The other half makes great snacks to eat while you're waiting 😉
Leave the cream cheese sitting out for an hour or more to soften before ready to use.
Shred the hard cheese, you'll need about 1 cup but feel free to shred extra. Abi helped with this one and went a little crazy with it!
Chop enough chives to make about ¼ cup but not too finely. It's for flavor and color so you want them to be very visible.
Drain/dry the corn – if the corn is anything other than fresh, it will need to be drained and dried in order for it to roast properly. I used frozen corn in the most recent batch to ensure it would work well. I placed a few paper towels in the bottom of a bowl and poured the corn into that to soak up any extra moisture.
I don't recommend canned corn but if that's all you have, just drain and dry the best you can and go from there.
Fire roasting the corn is not necessary but it does add a flavor profile to the corn that is unique and delicious so I recommend it.
Pour 2-3 TBS of olive oil or vegetable oil into a large iron skillet and turn the heat on high.
When the pan get good and hot, pour the corn into the pan and be ready to stir as it will start popping!
Once the corn settles down, let it sit and brown for 5-7 minutes. Once it starts browning, stir it around. Keep stirring every few minutes until it gets as brown as you like it.
This takes about 12-15 minutes so if you can have a helper dicing and shredding while you make the fire corn, it ends up being about right. Otherwise, you can do all the prep ahead of time.
Pour the fired corn into a half-size foil pan.
Add the cheeses, peppers, 1 cup of heavy whipping cream, butter, chives and seasoning to the pan.
Note: you do not need to stir everything together yet. I usually wait until it's been in the smoker for a while so the cheeses and butter can get melty.
I forgot to add the butter in the image below.. I added it later after it was in the smoker.
Set up the smoker for indirect heat at about 180-200°F if possible. 225°F is ok but you will want to decrease the cook time by about 1 hour.
If your smoker uses a water pan, fill it up.
Once the smoke is ready, place the pan of corn and friends on to the grate and let it smoke for about an hour.
After 30 minutes or so, the butter and cheese should be melty enough to stir around.
Remember that butter I forgot to add earlier? Here's where I finally remembered to add it. No problem at all!
From this point, stir the corn about every 15-20 minutes.
Add ~½ cup of heavy whipping cream if it needs to be more creamy.
After the smoked cheesy corn has been in the smoker for about 3 hours (or you just can't wait no longer), it should have plenty of smoke flavor and be ready to eat.
Please note: you can certainly cook it for less time but smoke flavor will be less.
There is an insane amount of modification that can be done to this recipe to make it personal. To name a few:
- Add more cheese,
- Use a different cheese
- Use more milk to thin it out
- Use serrano peppers or even habaneros to make it more spicy
- Add bacon
- Smoke for more or less time to adjust the smoke flavor
- Use a different kind of wood
What if I am adding this to the smoker when something else is cooking and the temperature is 225-240°F? No problem, just cook it for only 2 hours. It may get a little thicker due to the higher heat and need to be thinned with milk along the way.