As we wrap of the end of summer, (if you’re anything like me,) you may be clinging to the sunshine and soaking in every last warm ray, picnic lunch, or taking advantage of grilling dinner outside on the patio. One great way to top off summer and fall meals in my house, is by enjoying a fresh piece of corn on the cob! Anyone else agree? My family loves it, especially my toddler – although, her favorite part might actually be putting the little corn holders in the edges of the cob and feeling like a ‘big girl’ eating a ‘mommy size’ piece…but she loves it all the same. 🙂 However, do you ever feel that you just can’t quite get the cooking aspect down? Maybe it’s too chewy? Maybe you are cooking it to little or too long? Or not quite sure how to store it to maximize its freshness? For my fellow corn on the cob fans, here are some of fun facts and tips to make your corn on the cob ventures more successful as we close out summer and head into fall!
- There may be some mixed opinions on this, but corn is nutritious! Of course it is important to remember to limit the butter and salt you add for additional taste. Corn provides fiber, which aids in digestion. It also contains thiamin, phosphorus, vitamin C, folate and magnesium (about 10% of the daily value for each).
- The average ear of corn has 800 kernels, arranged in 16 rows, with one strand of silk for each kernel.
- Did You Know? Corn is produced on every continent except Antarctica.
- It is very common to overcook corn, but we encourage you not to. If on the cob, shuck and clean the corn, bring your water to a boil, drop corn in, and cook for 3 to 5 minutes. Remove the corn from the water and serve quickly while still warm- avoid letting it stand/soak in the water as it will become soggy and chewy.
- Shuck and wash just before cooking, to keep freshness at its peak
- Refrigerate corn immediately after bringing it home. This will delay the process of the sugars turning into starch and you’ll have a much fresher tasting product.
How To Select The Right Piece?
- Look for very small brown holes in the husk, especially towards the top.These small holes are wormholes and should be avoided. You’ll most likely notice that the corn has been eaten a bit as well.
- Use your hands to feel the kernels through the husk.You want to make sure that they’re plump and plentiful; if you can feel holes where kernels should be, or very small and hard kernels, then choose another. The kernels should also be evenly spaced and evenly sized.
- Look for tassels (those things sticking up out of the top) that are yellow to brown and sticky to the touch.If they’re dry or black, then it’s an old ear of corn and you should put it back.
- Look at the color of the husk.If it’s a bright green and tightly wrapped against the cob, then the corn is fresh. If the husks are yellowing and drying out then it is an older piece.
To Blanch Your Corn Before Freezing or Not To Blanch Before Freezing?
The answer is…NO. Words of the wise from staff at a local farm I visited recently, who assured me that the best way to freeze corn is to simply cut the kernels off the cobs, place into a sealed freezer bag, and place in the freezer. When ready to serve, remove from freezer and place into a sauté pan with a little butter/ or water. It’s that simple! I know I will be enjoying the local taste of summer corn all the cob all winter long with this simple prep ahead tip.
We hope you’ll also enjoy some of the recipes we’d like to share below!
Resources: WebMD and OhSweetBasil.com