Tasty Corn On The Cob Marks True Arrival Of Summer
By Pamela Redwine
I know summer is truly here when we start having fresh sweet corn for supper. I love sweet corn and although the season doesn’t last long. You can preserve it so that you can enjoy sweet corn all year long.
Selecting Fresh Corn
Look for fresh husks with good green husk color, silk ends that are free from decay or worm injury and stem ends that are not too discolored or dried. Select ears that are well covered with plump, not too mature kernels. Avoid ears with undeveloped kernels, ears with very large kernels and dark yellow kernels because they can be tough and not very sweet.
It is important to pick corn and process it within 2-3 hours. The sugar in corn is quickly lost, so for optimum quality process as soon after picking as possible. If not able to process immediately, store corn in the refrigerator.
Corn keeps well frozen. There are three ways to freeze corn: corn on the cob, whole kernel and cream style. When freezing corn, do small amounts at a time. Shuck the corn, remove silks, trim ends, wash and then blanch.
Corn On The Cob
Blanching corn is an important step in the freezing process. To blanch, put several ears of corn into a gallon of boiling water. Blanching time starts when the water returns to a boil. Blanch small ears for 7 minutes, medium ears for 9 minutes and large ears for 11 minutes. Blanching is longer for corn on the cob because it needs the heat to inactivate enzymes in the cob.
After you have completed the blanching process, chill corn thoroughly in iced water.
Cool long enough for cob to cool, but not so long as to become soggy. A good rule of thumb is to cool the corn as long as it took to blanch it.
Drain the water and wrap each ear in separate freezer film or freezer foil. You can put several ears in a freezer bag. Try to remove excess air. Label with date and contents. Freeze at 0°F or lower.
Blanch for 4 minutes, and then chill. Drain the water. Cut off the kernels to about two-thirdsdepth.
A corn cutter can be purchased through the Internet or from a store that sells kitchen equipment. For ease, drive a clean nail through a cutting board and skewer an ear of corn on the nail. Push the cutter down the cob with one easy stroke. Kernels can also be cut off the cob using a sharp knife. Pack the corn tightly into containers or freezer bags, leaving about a half inch head-space on top. Seal bags or packages and label with the date and contents.
Freeze in a freezer set at 0°F. Allow air circulation in the freezer so the corn can freeze quickly.
Cream Style Corn
Cut the corn at about the center of the kernels and then scrape the cob with the back of the knife to help remove the juice from the cob. Cook the corn in a double broiler. Heat and stir for about 10 minutes or until thickened.
Cool the corn quickly by putting the pan in an ice bath. Stir the corn until it has cooled.
Package the corn in airtight containers leaving about a half inch head space on the top. Label with date and contents. Freeze immediately in a freezer set at 0°F.
Well packaged, frozen corn can be held up to 9 months at 0°F.
Recipe of the Week
Double Corn Cakes
Prep 15 Minutes
Cook 10 minutes
1cup fresh corn kernels
1/2 red bell pepper, chopped
3/4 cup fat-free buttermilk
1/4 cup chopped fresh chives
1 large egg, lightly beaten
2 tsp canola oil
1 tsp fresh thyme leaves
1 cup all purpose flour
1/4 c cornmeal
1 tsp sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/8 tsp cayenne
1. Combine the corn, bell pepper, buttermilk, chives, egg, oil and thyme in a medium bowl. Combine the remaining ingredients in a large bowl. Slowly stir the corn mixture into the flour mixture just until combined. Let stand 5 minutes.
2. Spray a nonstick skillet with nonstick spray and set over medium heat. When a drop of water sizzles on it, pour half of the better onto it by 1/4 cupfuls. Spread to 3-inch rounds. Cook just until bubbles appear on the surface of the cakes, 2-3 minutes. Flip and cook until golden, 2-3 minutes. Repeat with the remaining batter, making a total of 8 corn cakes.
Per Servings: (2 corn cakes)
Fat 5 g
Saturated fat 1g
Trans fat 0g
Sodium 486 mg
Fiber 3 grams
Protein 8 grams