Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Corn on the Cob

I am fortunate to live in a rural area. That means every summer I have access to mass quantities of delicious sweet corn picked from the stalk. There's a farmer down the street that has a money box and a huge wagon full of corn that his teenage kids continuously restock. But alas, the fields are eventually harvested and the fresh sweet corn is gone for yet another year. Sure, you can get corn on the cob in the grocery store or the freezer section, but it's just not the same.

Here are some tips for enjoying summer's corn bounty all year long:

Select cobs that have green tightly closed husks and dry, brown silk that is not brittle. Rows of kernels should be plump and in tight rows up to the tip. The kernels should be firm enough to resist slight pressure.

Blanching & Freezing
Remove the husks and stems and break off the undeveloped tips. Use a dry vegetable brush or your fingers to remove the silk from between the rows and rinse the ears in cold water. Set up a large pot of water and bring to a rolling boil. This is important. If you don't have a very large pot, only blanch a couple of ears at a time as the more corn you put in the longer it will take to get the water back to boiling. If it takes longer than a minute, there's too much corn in the pot. Also have a large bowl of ice and water sitting at the ready. Blanch the ears by dropping them into boiling water for:

7 minutes for small ears
9 minutes for medium ears
11 minutes for large ears

Remove the ears and plunge them into the ice water for the same amount of time you blanched them for. Drain the ears thoroughly. Wrap each ear in plastic wrap then place into zipper storage freezer bags. Be sure to mark your bag with the date they are good until, corn will freeze well for 10-12 months if wrapped properly. If you are able, a food sealer system is even better!

Remove corn from freezer and thaw in the refrigerator for several hours. If you don't have that kind of time, go ahead and pop it into boiling water for 5-6 minutes or in the microwave for 3-4 minutes.

Freezing Kernels - No Cobs
If you don't have a lot of freezer space to spare, you can freeze just the kernels. Follow the instructions above for blanching, cooling and draining the corn. Remove the kernels with a sharp knife.

whole kernels: simply cut the kernels off the cob and store in freezer bags.

cream corn: cut the tips of the kernels about 1/2" deep and scrape the cobs with the back of a knife to remove the juice and the heart of the kernel.

Take some of this summer's bounty with you!

~ Amanda

Check out this article (with recipes!) on OFL: Harvesting and Using Fresh Corn

1 comment:

  1. Cool. Thanks so much for this "Dummies Guide." I posted about it on my blog. Check it out at: http://is.gd/UQsT

    Thanks again!
    Andrea in NC


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