Pouring rain on a glooming evening. It’s cold with a chill in the air. The charcoal fire burning by the hawker stalls is probably the best way to keep warm when you’re out & about. That’s what’s I used to do but my excuse was to stop off at the street stall to sample their spicy roasted ‘makai butta’ slathered with lime, chilli powder & salt. ‘Butta’ or spicy corn on the cob is sold by a lot of hawkers & street stalls in Mumbai. The corn is roasted straight over the charcoal which in my opinion makes the taste that much nicer giving it that charred flavour to the sweetness of the corn niblets. Paired with fresh lemon, chilli and salt its makes for a perfect balance of sweet, spicy and tangy flavours. In the recipe below I have used Kashmiri chilli powder which is very mild in flavour but high on colour. You could swap this for a mild paprika if you prefer.
Though my memories of eating this were in the monsoons of India I make it often now during summer too. I have cooked this on the hob a few times and it gives a similar taste to the charred corn. But there really is nothing like cooking it on the barbie; the scorching heat with a fired up barbecue, meats galore and spicy corn is so worth it.
Mix the chilli powder & salt in a bowl and set aside. Barbecue the sweet corn until lightly charred all over or roast over the hob (do be careful!). You’ll know its roasting as you hear the kernels popping & cooking. Once they are cooked; dip the lime wedges into the chilli powder mix. Now rub the sweet corn with the lime making sure the juice of the lime helps spread the chilli mix evenly over the sweet corn. Serve warm with some extra spice & lime.