Payoff for husking cobs of corn is a sweet one for Groton woman

Katherine Grandstrand kgrandstrand@aberdeennews.com
Farm Forum

For Megan Erickson, sweet corn conjures up memories of hunkering in the bed of a pickup and cleaning the cobs to reveal their golden kernels.

Corn was a family tradition growing up on a farm outside of Groton.

Erickson is a South Dakota State University Extension nutrition field specialist

“We would go out and pick sweet corn, we would husk it and we would save some for eating or we would go through the process of food preservation,” she said. “As a whole family, I remember sitting in the back of the pickup and just husking — husking the corn and you’d just have that silk everywhere.”

The payoff was at meal time.

That’s because with a juicy burst in each bite, sweet corn is the epitome of summer cuisine.

“I hear sweet corn, and I think sweet summertime,” Erickson said. “Sweet corn is just one of many vegetables that can do that.”

Corn on the cob can be boiled, steamed, microwaved or grilled — it all just depends on the eater’s preference, equipment and time.

“Preparing it is very versatile,” she said.

Corn on the cob should be stored in the fridge with the husk on up to a few days before being eaten, Erickson said.

The popular summer serving carries all kinds of benefits.

“It provides fiber so it can help reduce your cholesterol, it may help lower your risk for heart disease, it’s low in calories and it’s cholesterol free,” she said. “It also has some vitamin C in it. That really just helps with our immune system.”

There are only so many ears one person can eat in a summer, but anything that can’t be consumed right away can be prepped and frozen for that deliciousness in the dead of winter, Erickson said.

“We would boil it, cut it off the cob and then put it in freezer bags and save for the winter months,” she said.

Once corn is picked, it doesn’t matter as much when it’s consumed, Erickson said.

“Harvesting vegetables at their peak can sometimes provide the most nutrition,” she said. “There are a lot of similarities in nutrition between fresh, frozen and canned.”

Butter, salt and pepper are favorite seasonings, but they’re not the only way to jazz up corn on the cob, Erickson said.

“If you’re watching your salt intake, there’s a lot of great seasonings you can put on it to add some extra flavor (and) kinda bring out that juiciness” she said.

Herbed butter corn on the cob

Ingredients:

• 1/2 cup (1 stick) of butter, softened

• 4 tablespoons paprika

• 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper

• 1 tablespoon black pepper

• 1 tablespoon garlic powder

• 1 tablespoon salt

• 1 teaspoon dried thyme

• Corn on the cob, cooked your favorite way.

Instructions:

• Mix paprika, cayenne pepper, black pepper, garlic powder, salt and thyme in a bowl.

• Add butter and mix evenly.

• Dump mixture on parchment or wax paper and shape into cylinder, sealing ends by twisting. Refrigerate until ready to use.

• Spread onto freshly cooked corn.

Recipe adapted from South Dakota State University Extension.

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Sweet corn makes a great summer side. TNS photo.