In the bowl of a small food processor, combine the basil, ¼ cup of the mayonnaise, lemon juice and several grinds of black pepper. Process until the basil is finely chopped. Add the remaining mayonnaise and lemon juice and process again. Store tightly covered in the fridge for up to 3 days.
MAKE THE BISCUITS
Heat the oven to 450°F. Line a heavy-duty rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. Whisk together the egg yolk and heavy cream and set the egg wash aside.
Put the corn in a small dish with a tablespoon or two of water and microwave on high for 40 seconds or submerge them for a few seconds in boiling water (use a hand-held strainer). Drain and pat dry.
In a medium bowl, stir together the flour, baking powder, and table salt. Add the chilled butter pieces and the Cheddar. Using a pastry cutter (or two table knives), blend the butter into the fl our until the mixture resembles coarse breadcrumbs. Make a well in the center of the mixture and pour in the milk.
Mix with a wooden spoon just until the dry ingredients are moistened and the dough comes away from the side of the bowl (the dough will be a little sticky). Quickly mix in the corn kernels.
Transfer the dough to a floured surface. Flour your hands and fold the dough onto itself fi ve or six times. (Don’t be afraid to fl our the surface or the dough as needed.) Pat it into a square shape and sprinkle it with fl our. Roll it out to a thickness of about ¾ inch. With a lightly floured 2-inch biscuit cutter, cut out biscuit rounds (do not twist the cutter). You should have 12 to 14 biscuits. (You can put pieces together and reroll the dough once). Place the rounds on the baking sheet. Brush the tops with the egg wash and sprinkle with sea salt. Bake until the biscuits are puff ed and lightly browned, 14 to 15 minutes. (The bottoms will be golden.) Let the biscuits cool on the pan.
ASSEMBLE THE SANDWICHES
Split the corn biscuits in half and spread each half with basil mayonnaise. Arrange one red tomato slice on the bottom half and top with one leaf of green basil. Layer another tomato slice (of a different color if you have it) on top, followed by a leaf of purple basil (if you have it). Finish with the top half of the biscuit. Arrange on a platter for serving, garnished with sprigs of basil if you like.
Recipe from Fresh From the Farm by Susie Middleton, The Tauten Press