Too much sweet corn?

– Posted in: Recipes, Vegetables
20 comments

Girl crawling through corn rows

Half-height corn makes a good tunnel for a child to crawl through.

Is there such a thing as too much sweet corn?

On Sunday he asked me, “How was the corn you had yesterday for lunch, when I wasn’t here?” I said it was getting a little mature. He said, “Oh, I guess I better freeze the rest of it.” I had no idea how much was still up there. I’m not sure he did, either. He didn’t start harvesting corn until after lunch. While he was up there, five people left to go pick blackberries. Three people were called to help neighbors bring in their hay.

He brought down three big laundry baskets full of corn; two of them held shucked corn. He’ll be cutting the kernels off the ears after they’re blanched, in preparation for freezing. The six-year-old and the eight-year-old will husk the last basket of corn. I get blanching duty:

  1. Weigh out 5 pounds corn ears.
  2. Put into 5 gallons boiling water
  3. Set timer for 6 minutes
  4. Fill 13 quart bowl with ice water
  5. Weigh out another 5 pounds of corn
  6. Remove first batch of corn with tongs into strainer
  7. Dump into ice water
  8. Set second timer for 6 minutes
  9. Put next batch of corn into boiling water
  10. See number 3
  11. When second timer beeps, remove corn from ice water and bring to the guy with the knife, who will cut corn and put it into quart freezer bags
  12. Continue with number 4 until all corn is done, or madness sets in.

(If you’re smart, you’ll lay towels on the floor in the prime dripping locations.)

Image of cooked ears of sweet corn on a platter
We didn’t count how many quart bags went into the freezer. But 6 cups cut kernels went into that night’s Cheddar Chicken Chowder (recipe below). Plus we had about 2 dozens ears for supper. Plus he gave away an additional 2 laundry baskets of unhusked corn to our friends.

That was the first variety. Now the second variety is ready to eat.

Corn growing in vegetable garden

We've never grown this much corn before. We may never again.

He planted five varieties.

Cheddar Chicken Chowder

I originally found this in Cooking Light. It is a low-fat recipe that “doesn’t taste low-fat.”

2 bacon slices
cooking spray
1 pound boneless skinless chicken breast — cut into bite-size pieces
1 cup chopped onion
1 cup diced red bell pepper — (1 large)
2 garlic cloves — minced
4 1/2 cups fat-free chicken broth
1 3/4 cups diced peeled red potatoes — (I use the French-fry disk of the food processor)
2 1/4 cups corn kernels
1/2 cup flour
2 cups 2% low-fat milk
3 ounces cheddar cheese — shredded (3/4 cup)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper

Cut up chicken. Peel potatoes. Peel garlic. Peel onions and cut in chunks. Core peppers and cut in 1″ pieces. Mince garlic in food processor. Chop onion and red pepper in food processor. Cook bacon in a Dutch oven coated with cooking spray over medium-high heat until crisp. Remove bacon from pan. Crumble; set aside. Add chicken, onion, bell pepper, and garlic to bacon fat in pan; sauté 5 minutes. Meanwhile, cut potatoes with French Fry disk of food processor. Add broth and potatoes; bring to boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 20 minutes or until potatoes are tender. While potatoes are cooking, grate cheese. Add corn; stir well. Place flour in a bowl. Gradually add milk, stirring with a whisk until blended; add to soup. Cook over medium heat 15 minutes or until thick, stirring frequently. Stir in cheese, salt, and pepper. Top with crumbled bacon. (I mix the bacon in as it is too hard to sprinkle on so many bowls.)

Serves 7; Serving Size: 1 1/2 cups

The Best Corn Casserole

This is not low-fat, but I don’t care. The only time I make it is to bring to covered dish suppers. It is tons better than what passes for scalloped corn in my husband’s family.
1 pound bacon
1/2 cup butter
1/2 medium onion — chopped
1/2 cup chopped celery
1 red pepper — chopped
1 green pepper — chopped
5 tablespoons flour
2 cups sour cream
2 pounds fresh corn kernels — *see Note
salt — to taste
pepper
1 tablespoon chopped parsley

Heat the oven to 350º. Cook the bacon, then chop it into bite-size pieces and set it aside. Melt the butter in large pot over medium heat. Saute the onion, celery, and peppers until soft. Stir in the flour, then the sour cream, until well combined. Add the corn and most of the bacon bits and season with salt and pepper. Pour the mixture into a 9×13 inch baking dish and sprinkle on the remaining bacon bits and parsley. Bake for 30 to 45 minutes, until lightly browned.

About the Author

Kathy Purdy is a colchicum evangelist, converting unsuspecting gardeners into colchicophiles. She would be delighted to speak to your group about colchicums or other gardening topics. Kathy’s been writing since 4th grade, gardening since high school, and blogging since 2002.

In the end, this may be the most important thing about frost: Frost slows us down. In spring, it tempers our eagerness. In fall, it brings closure and rest. In our gotta-go world–where every nanosecond seems to count–slowness can be a great gift. So rather than see Jack Frost as an adversary, you could choose to greet him as a friend.

~Philip Harnden in A Gardener’s Guide to Frost: Outwit the Weather and Extend the Spring and Fall Seasons

Comments on this entry are closed.

Muum August 24, 2009, 10:16 pm

that is a LOT of corn. Maybe your kids should sell some!
.-= Muum´s last blog ..sweet corn harvest – a mixed bag =-.

Philip September 8, 2008, 7:41 am

Also, in the image of the stand of corn, I love how you captured the light and atmosphere
Regards,
Philip

Philip September 8, 2008, 7:40 am

I love the corn tunnel. What a great image. Also the stand of the corn from the distance is also beautiful. Those recipes make me hungry!

Bonnie September 3, 2008, 9:38 pm

Yum, now you’ve started a craving. I’ll have to incorporate corn into tomorrow night’s dinner.

adekun August 24, 2008, 10:00 pm

Think my little boy had too much sweetcorn last night. I like the post. Unfortunately the crows got to ours before we did.

Miryam August 24, 2008, 5:07 pm

We just made corn fritters, and then picked some more corn (60c/ea) up at the local farmstand for more!

Can’t have too much corn, we think.

Mary Ann Newcomer August 24, 2008, 1:30 pm

oooooohhhhh, that photo of the field of corn with the house in the background is just lovely! and i wish you could share the fresh corn with me. I will be freezing some myself, probably just after Labor Day.

Shady Gardener August 22, 2008, 11:32 am

Have you tried corn fritters? We used to love them! Batter with corn, dropped by tablespoons in hot oil, drained on paper towels, served with maple syrup. Yum!!

I grew up on a farm and we had lots of sweet corn. My mom did the work. Fresh-frozen corn is wonderful in the wintertime. I don’t envy you the upcoming labor, but it does pay off later. Enjoy!

Ro August 21, 2008, 9:55 pm

My favorite corn recipe is from Rick Bayless’ Authentic Mexican. I think. Basically, Mexican corn and chile chowder. You puree some of the corn to thicken the soup. I also like corn with lobster – cook bacon, sautee onions and pepper, add corn, and balance with a dash of vinegar. I have loved other people’s corn pudding, but never made it myself.

I bought corn seeds to grow myself – an old fashioned non sugery enhanced anything variety which is hard to find these days. I bought it for a friend of mine who misses the corn of his Ohio youth – today’s corn is too sweet and perky for him. I found Ashworth corn from Fedco seeds. It was formerly known as “rat-selected” corn because it was the variety the critters liked the best. I am a sucker for a good story. I never did plant it.

Cindy August 21, 2008, 12:20 pm

Your photos and freezing adventures remind me of my childhood. Your recipes sound great and I will have to try them, especially that cheddar chicken corn chowder, that will be perfect this winter.

Margaret August 21, 2008, 9:43 am

From the looks of your photos you are not just growing a little backyard corn over there but seriously farming. Wow. I am overwhelmed at the prospect of shucking and blanching and freezing a mere few bags from the farmstand, let along the back 40! Once again, I am impressed at the goings-on in Purdyville.

Kathy Purdy August 21, 2008, 10:05 am

Well, Margaret, let’s just say we are already making plans to scale back the corn planting next year. We don’t have an equivalent area to rotate the corn to next year, not to mention we don’t have the freezer space. We also decided the earliest corn didn’t have the flavor we like.

Kathy Purdy August 20, 2008, 8:52 pm

Britt, we’ve never tried that gadget. My husband was happy with a freshly sharpened, good quality knife.

Annie, yikes! Even in the grocery stores it’s going for 4 ears/$1, or $3/doz.

Diana, do your in-laws ever eat it for breakfast? I’ve heard of farming families that do.

Diana August 20, 2008, 7:45 pm

My DH’s family raises corn, so I shared your post with him. Oh, how we wish we were there to help you … EAT IT!!!

Jessica August 20, 2008, 5:13 pm

The answer is no!! haha:)
Thanks for posting those recipes–they all sound so good!!

Annie in Austin August 20, 2008, 3:01 pm

Sweet corn was $4 for 3 ears at the store last weekend, so if I try your recipes I’ll buy bags of frozen corn too, Kathy.

“A little mature” – oh my, that made me laugh.

Annie at the Transplantable Rose

britt August 20, 2008, 2:04 pm

wow. that is crazy. Have you ever tried the corn cutting device that is basically a circle blad attached to handles. The circle goes over the pointy end and you just push down.
I remember my mom using one when we did the same proccess in our kitchen when I was little, but I don’t recall if that device worked well.

Jane Marie August 20, 2008, 1:14 pm

Great recipes. As far as I’m concerned there’s no such thing as too much corn.

Celia August 20, 2008, 1:07 pm

I am envious! I will be buying corn to make corn relish, one of my favorite things in the world.

Cindy August 20, 2008, 12:01 pm

It sounds like y’all could keep busy doing nothing but harvesting, husking, blanching & freezing! I’m glad you find time to enjoy the fruits of your labors. I’m going to come back for that chowder recipe when it’s cool enough here to really enjoy it. It won’t be as tasty as yours, though, since I’ll have to use store bought frozen corn!