A Study in Corn

The "pyramid of corn" souffle appetizer ($8.95) at Mark's (1658 Westheimer, 713-523-3800) showcases the versatility of corn. The soufflé is velvety smooth, and the addition of shallots gives it a wonderful taste. Sprinkled around the base of the pyramid are roasted kernels of heirloom corn, wild mushrooms and small pools of sweet Madeira sauce. Corn "shoots" made from the husk stick up from the top of the souffle, while corn chips stick out from the sides. And contrasting dramatically with the rest of the dish is jet-black Avruga caviar, which sits on top of the pyramid as if a volcano had just erupted.
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Paul Galvani