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Summer Corn Recipes For Now and Later

August 8, 2013 | By | 3 Replies More

Summer corn recipe

Indiana landscape

Having grown up in the midwest, I have memories of riding in the car for miles with corn fields on both sides, farmers offering summer jobs detassling corn, and the annual Valparaiso Popcorn Fest. It wasn’t until I got older that I really started to ponder the corn.

The fields stretch out like an ocean of corn on all sides, and I started to wonder where it all goes.  Most corn grown today is not meant for direct human consumption.  It’s intended for use in all kinds of processed foods that are making us fat and sick and as feed for animals raised in the industrial meat system that’s inhumane and pollutes the environment. So, in the American industrial food system, corn truly is king.  The vast majority of corn is genetically modified (GMO) to survive massive amounts of Roundup herbicide and even produce it’s own insecticide.  Ewwwww Factor: off the charts!

To cut the kernels from the cob, first cut the pointy end from each cob so you can stand it securely in a large bowl with one hand and make the vertical cuts with the other.

Now, here’s the rub: I love the taste of sweet summer corn coated in butter.  Closely behind tomatoes, corn is my second favorite summer food. Please cut it from the cob for me though because I can’t stand how it gets stuck in my teeth.  I also can’t stand to watch (and hear!) other people eat corn on the cob, but that’s a whole ‘nother issue.  Because GMO corn is so prevalent, it’s one of the few things I won’t buy at a roadside farm stand unless it is certified organic.  Certified organic farmers are not allowed to knowingly plant genetically engineered seeds.

Summer corn is perfect for enjoying now and later since it’s easy to freeze for all your mid-winter soups and stews.  During summer, simply cut the kernels from the cob and saute them in olive oil and butter with handfuls of fresh herbs like parsley, thyme, basil, and tarragon and season with kosher salt and freshly ground pepper.

A new favorite salad for Mr. President and me is this summer corn recipe adapted from Ina Garten that’s so easy,  we can make it in the Residence Inn suite we’re staying in while our home is being renovated.  Ina never lets me down – her recipes always delight since the result is so much more than you’d expect from the short list of simple ingredients.

summer corn recipe

Simply fabulous summer corn salad

NOW:  Summer Corn Salad

Ingredients (serves 4-6)

5 ears of fresh corn, shucked

1/2 cup finely chopped red onion (1 small onion)

3 Tbsp. cider vinegar

3 Tbsp. good olive oil

1/2 tsp. kosher salt

1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper

1/2 cup julienned fresh basil leaves

summer corn recipe

Doing this into a bowl keeps the kernels from flying all over.

Step one:

5 ears of fresh corn, shucked

In a large pot of vigorously boiling, salted water, cook the corn cobs for three minutes until the starchiness is gone.  Remove the cobs from the water and plunge them into a big bowl or pot of ice water to stop the cooking abruptly.  Let the cobs cool.  When they’re cool enough to handle, cut the kernels from the cobs.

Step two:

1/2 cup finely chopped red onion (1 small onion)

3 Tbsp. cider vinegar

3 Tbsp. good olive oil

1/2 tsp. kosher salt

1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper

1/2 cup julienned fresh basil leaves

summer corn recipe

Plentiful summer corn

In a large bowl, toss together all ingredients, except for the fresh basil – save that for just before serving.  Adjust the salt and pepper and serve cold or at room temperature.

LATER:  Freezing Summer Corn

Freezing corn is really easy, but you need to blanch it first.  Corn contains natural enzymes that need to be destroyed by cooking in order to preserve nutrients, flavor, and color.

Always a planner, I’m on the lookout for a stellar corn chowder recipe that I can enjoy this winter with corn and corn stock that I hope to freeze when we’re finally able to move back into our house and start using our new kitchen.  When I find one, preferrably with bacon in the ingredient list, I’ll share it with you.

Step one:

Boil the shucked corn cobs in vigorously boiling, salted water for 5 minutes.  Plunge the cobs into a big bowl or pot of ice water and leave them for 5 minutes to stop the cooking process.

Don’t be so quick to discard those corn cobs.  You can use them to make corn stock or add them in with other vegetables when making stock to enhance the flavor!

Step two:

Cut the kernels from the cobs.

Pack the corn into freezer safe bags and remove as much air as possible.  Label and freeze.

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Category: Favorites, Food, General, Recipes, Side Dishes, Summer

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