Vessel’s Fresno Aioli and Fresh Corn Esquites

Good Things Utah

 Roe’e Levy, Chef/Owner of Vessel Kitchen was in studio making us mouth watering food! Find Vessel at and IG @vesselkitchen 

Vessel’s Fresno Aioli

The fresno aioli is our take on a sriracha mayo. At Vessel, we use our pickled fresno peppers as the base for this sauce. At home, a good chili sauce like sriracha will work great. We balance the heat with a touch of honey and freshly squeezed lemon juice. This sauce is versatile and can be used as a condiment or as a starter to a great dish.

Fres – Serves 4-6 adults

● Pickled fresno chili sauce – 4 tablespoons (can use sriracha)

● Paprika – 1 Teaspoon

● Salt – ½ Teaspoon

● Ground black pepper – Dash

● Fresh squeezed lemon juice – 2 Teaspoons

● Whole grain mustard – 1 Tablespoon

● Dijon mustard – 1 Tablespoon

● Raw apple cider vinegar – 4 Tablespoons

● Honey – 2 Teaspoons

● Mayonnaise – 2 Cups

Tools and such:

– Blender

– Rubber spatula

– Airtight container – about 2 cups worth


1. Add all the ingredients to the bowl of the blender and puree until smooth.

2. Move to an airtight container, and refrigerate until use

Vessel’s Fresh Corn Esquites

Smokey, sweet, spicy, and tangy, esquites are the off-the-cob version of elotes – grilled on-the-cob Mexican street corn slathered with creamy, cheesy, lime-scented, chili-flecked sauce.

Since the beginning of Vessel, we have played around with different variations of this corn dish, in our quest to find the best version. We grilled it and baked it and did so on the cob and off the cob, boiled in stock, in milk and many flavors and spices.

This version is combining everything we learned to the perfect combination of sweetness, heat and smoke. If you don’t have a grill, it can be done in the oven.

Fresh Corn Esquites Recipe – Serves 4-6 adults

Step One – Grilling the corn – (or oven roasting) – Preheat grill to medium high heat (about 500f) or convection oven to 400f

Ingredients (all ingredients in this step can be rough chopped or diced – it will be pureed later)

● Whole corn, on the cob, in the husk – 5 Each

● Olive oil – about ½ Tablespoon per corn

● Salt – 1 Tablespoon

● Pepper – ½ Tablespoon

● Chili flakes (we love Korean chili flakes) – 1 Tablespoon

Tools and such:

– Grill or oven

– Long reach tongs

– Baking sheet

– Paper towels

– Serrated knife


1. Preheat grill to medium high heat (about 500f) or convection oven to 400f

2. Strip down the husk off the cob – without removing it at the stem – we will place it back over the cob later in the cooking process

3. Remove all the corn silk and discard

4. Rub each cob with the oil and season with salt, pepper and chili flakes

5. Once done, cover the cob back with the husk

6. Follow the step you’d like:

a. Grilling: Place on the hot grill for 15 minutes, rotating every 5 minutes

b. Roasting: place on the baking sheet in the middle of the preheated oven, and roast for 20 minutes. Rotate and roast for an additional 10 minutes

7. Remove from the grill or oven, and let cool down for 20 minutes – do not strip the husk yet

8. Once cooled down, fold the husk backward to create a “pony tail”

9. Take two squares of paper towel and wet with cold water. Fold down to 3 in square and set in the middle of the sheet pan – this will be used to support the corn when you cut the kernels off the cob

10. Hold corn at the husk and stem side, and point it downward, placing the tip over the paper towel. Cut all the kernels off the cob

11. The leftover cob and husk can be used to make a smokey corn stock that can be used to make amazing rice dishes – just simmer in water for 1 hour.

Step Two – Mixing the esquites


● Cut corn from above – should make about 5 cups

● Fresh scallion, sliced thin – 1 bunch

● Fresh cilantro, chopped – ½ cup + 1 tablespoon for garnish

● Fresh fresno pepper (Red Jalapeno), small diced – 1 each

● Fresh lime, squeezed – 2 each

● Fresno aioli (see recipe) or any other spicy mayo – ½ cup

● Salt – ½ tablespoon

● Pepper – ¼ tablespoon

● Grated feta cheese or Cotija cheese – 4 tablespoons + 1 tablespoon for garnish

Tools and such:

– Cutting board

– Sharp knife to cut all that stuff above

– Rubber spatula

– Mixing bowl


1. Mix everything together, plate in a big bowl and garnish with the extra feta and cilantro

Deena Manzanares
Deena Marie Manzanares is a Utah native, but lived in NYC for a few years while attending the Atlantic Theater Company Acting School. Locally, she has worked as a professional actor for years in both stage and film.

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