Custard, Salsa, Throw It On The Grill: Corn Is Cheap And Healthy

Who doesn’t love corn on the cob? In my world, it’s not summer until there's corn stuck in my teeth. Corn is quite nutritious, and, priced at five ears for $2 at local farmers' markets, you can eat it guilt free.

Here’s how to make the most of it:

1. Choose Your Ears Carefully

Take a peek inside the husk to choose your maize. Peel back a bit of the corn’s green jacket to verify that the kernels are plump and tightly arranged in rows. Some markets don’t let you preview their product. In this case, feel that the ear is heavy for its size, the husk fits snuggly around the ear, the husk is uniformly colored from the base to the tip, and the silk is moist and light in color. During hot summer afternoons, I dig down in the pile  to find cool ears. Heat is bad for the corn, since it accelerates the conversion of its precious sugar into starch.

2. Freshness Is Imperative

Corn is best eaten as soon as it’s purchased. Once those ears are harvested, their sugars begin to convert to starch. Perfect world situation: Consume your corn the day you buy it. If you must store it overnight, put the ears in the fridge.  Don’t shuck your corn until you’re ready to use it, in order to slow down the development of that darn starch. Before getting started, put down newspaper under your shucking station, as the silk tends to be messy. Rip the husks down to the base and snap the handle off, then peel all the silk away from the cob.

3. Cookin’ Corn

  • On the grill: Wrap the shucked ears in foil. Put on the coolest part of the grill and let the corn “steam” for 8-10 minutes.
  • In a pot: Drop ears into briskly boiling water for about 5 minutes. Remove with tongs; those cobs are hot!
  • As kernels: Carefully cut the corn from the cob with a sharp knife. The goal is to shave just the kernels, not the tough “housing”  where the niblets grow. Use the back of the knife to obtain the shavings, which are super sweet. Sautee in butter for 3 minutes. Add a bit of salt.

For 4 delicious corn recipes, check out our slideshow!

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