Corn and sausage gratin.

I feel like I wait all year for corn season (and strawberry season and tomato season, too, for that matter). The best corn really is that which is picked right before it's cooked, so visiting a farm stand or farmers market is essential to get the most out of the season (for a list of local farmers markets, visit www.DispatchKitchen.com).

Once you've had your fill of just-cooked corn on the cob slathered in butter, give the following recipe a try.

CORN AND SAUSAGE GRATIN
Makes 8 servings
This recipe is based on one by Betty Rosbottom.

3 tablespoons olive oil plus extra if needed 8 ounces sweet Italian sausage, casings removed 5 cups fresh corn kernels (from 5 or 6 large ears) 2 cups chopped leeks, white and light green parts only (about 3 to 4 medium leeks) 4 large eggs 1 1/2 cups half-and-half 1/2 cup sour cream kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper 1 1/2 cups grated Gruyere cheese 2 tablespoons chopped flat leaf parsley Arrange an oven rack at center position and preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter a 9-by-13-inch baking dish.

Heat oil in a large, heavy skillet over medium heat. Add sausage and saut until lightly browned, crumbling with a spoon as it cooks, about 3 to 4 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer sausage to paper towels to drain.

To the same skillet add corn and leeks. Cook, stirring often, and adding more oil if needed, until leeks and corn are softened, about 8 to 10 minutes.
In a large bowl whisk eggs, half-and-half and sour cream together. Add the sausage, corn mixture, 1 cup of the cheese, and chopped parsley. Mix well. Stir in 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper.

Transfer mixture to the prepared baking dish. Sprinkle with remaining cheese.
Bake until gratin is golden on top and a knife inserted into the center comes out clean, about 35 minutes. Let rest 10 minutes.