1. 2 cups masarepa (precooked instant cornmealsee note)
  2. 2 cups water
  3. 1/4 cup sugar
  4. 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  5. 3 tablespoons butter
  6. 1 1/2 cups canned, frozen, or fresh corn kernels, cooked
  7. 8 ounces mozzarella cheese, sliced
  8. 2 to 4 tablespoons vegetable oil
  9. Fire-Roasted Garlic Salsa (page 24)


  1. Dump the cornmeal into a mixing bowl.
  2. Set aside.
  3. Combine the water, sugar, salt, and butter in a small saucepan and bring to a boil.
  4. Pour it into the cornmeal and mix well.
  5. Chop the corn kernels just a bit, and then mix them into the dough.
  6. Let the dough rest for 15 minutes.
  7. Divide the dough into 12 equal portions and flatten each one out with your hands into a 4- to 5-inch disk.
  8. Lay the disks out on a piece of waxed or parchment paper.
  9. Slap the sliced mozzarella evenly on top of 6 of them, and cover each with one of the remaining disks to make a sandwich.
  10. Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in a cast-iron skillet set over medium heat.
  11. Slip a couple of arepas into the pan.
  12. Cook about 2 minutes, til golden brown.
  13. Flip and cook about 2 minutes on the other side.
  14. Flip back to the first side and cook 1 minute longer; then flip one last time and cook the second side til well browned around the edges.
  15. Let them sit a couple of minutes before cutting each one into 4 wedges.
  16. Finish cooking and cutting the remaining arepas in the same way, adding more oil to the pan if needed.
  17. Grab a platter or individual plates, arrange the arepa wedges around a bowl of salsa, and dig in.