Now that there’s corn at every farmers market, we’re spending a lot of time husking it while wondering if there’s a better way. Last year, a video came out addressing this predicament that immediately went viral, racking up, at last count, more than 7 million YouTube views. In it, an adorable gentleman claimed that if you steamed corn in the microwave and then shook it out of the husk, it would slide out well-cooked and completely clean of husk and silk. We had to see this technique in action for ourselves. Our conclusion? Microwaving corn on the cob works, and it’s delicious. The corn comes out perfectly tender — with not a string of silk in sight.
Get the step-by-step photos
The first 25 years of my life, I ate fresh corn just one way: It was shucked, boiled until tender and slathered with butter. And while that’s a delicious way to handle the sweet corn of summer, I’ve learned during the last decade that there are many other ways to do it justice.
It was a batch of grilled corn that first opened my eyes to corn’s flexibility. I was at a cookout and a friend set shucked and lightly oiled cobs on a hot barbecue and kept turning them until the kernels were speckled and golden. Topped with mayonnaise and a little grated cheese, it was transcendentally good.
Once the corn floodgates were open, it was a quick trip to corn salads, salsas and chowders. Really, the only thing I’ve not done with corn is make jelly from the corncobs (a traditional Southern preserve).
This summer, the corn has been particularly abundant, and we’ve been getting a dozen or more ears each week at our farm share pickup. I’ve done every one of my regular preparations, and still, there’s more. Happily, I’ve recently discovered another recipe to add to my repertoire. It’s Bobby Flay’s Creamed Corn Succotash with Cotija, and I can’t stop eating it.
Before you start cooking, read these tips
You’ve seen it overflowing the farmers market tables and piling high in the grocery store produce section: Corn is officially in season, with its sweet, bright-yellow cobs at their peak of freshness from now through the end of the summer. While shucking and boiling corn, then dousing it with butter and salt is a deliciously traditional way to prepare this family-friendly vegetable, there are indeed dressed-up versions of the classic that are every bit as simple and quick to prepare. Grilling fresh cobs will deliver a smoky note, while experimenting with ingredient butters or baking the kernels into a sweet casserole will offer next-level tastes and textures that highlight corn’s natural flavor. Check out Food Network’s top-five corn dishes below from the Neelys, Guy, Bobby and more Food Network chefs for easy recipe inspiration.
5. Smoky Corn on the Cob — Thanks to a low and slow grilling technique, these slightly charred cobs have time to become tender without burning.
4. Sweet Corn Pudding — A creamy, cheesy casserole that will round out your backyard barbecue, the Neelys’ fresh-corn bake is spiked with a pinch of cayenne pepper for subtle heat.
Get the top-three recipes
Who doesn’t love corn? It’s sweet, crisp, fun to eat and says summer like no other food. We also love corn for its versatility: It’s as delicious boiled as it is grilled, on the cob or off, sauteed or stirred into batters. We created corn recipes of all types for Food Network Magazine‘s July/August booklet, and although I enjoy corn in all its forms, I’m a purist at heart. I like it best simply grilled or boiled, with ample butter and a generous dusting of kosher or sea salt.
When I’m in the mood for a little more pizzazz, I mix up a flavored salt like the jerk or lemon-pepper seasoning in the booklet, both of which are extremely easy to prepare and transform classic corn on the cob into something exceptional. Here are two more recipes for amazing flavored salts. The bacon salt is a perfect complement to grilled corn served alongside burgers and hot dogs; the lemon coriander one tastes great on buttery boiled corn at a clam bake.
Read more »
Nibbling corn on the cob has its perks, but you already knew that. This hand-held side is as easy as boiling water, smearing butter and going in for a bite. If you ask FN Dish, corn is a cornerstone of the great American barbecue, and it need not be fiddled with.
But as it turns out, things get a lot more interesting when the corn is shaved right of that cob, and Food Network’s fleet of killer summer corn salads are proof.
For a true summery flavor, kick up the grill. Bobby Flay’s Grilled Corn Salad with Lime, Red Chile and Cotija marries charred, sweet kernels with the most aromatic ingredients around. In this Grilled Corn and Chipotle Pepper Salad, all that’s left to do is combine all the ingredients after the corn finishes grilling. Plate these salads next to Tyler Florence’s Carne Asada for a grill-reliant, outdoor meal.
Ina Garten’s Fresh Corn Salad (pictured above) places corn on a pedestal, bringing it together with nothing more than an effortless vinaigrette, diced red onion and fresh basil leaves.
Get more corn recipes from friends and family
“Knee-high by the Fourth of July.” That’s the saying farmers go by when they’re judging the success of their corn crops. Well July Fourth has come and gone, which means it’s high time to enjoy the fruits of the farmers’ labor.
Though nothing is better than picking up a sweet corncob and chomping into as the warm butter drips down your chin, there are other ways to cook and enjoy this summertime classic. Pair corn off the cob with in-season ingredients and let it shine among other fresh, simple flavors. Check out three of Food Network’s favorite corn-based recipes below, then tell us your favorite way to enjoy corn.
Food Network Magazine’s summer-fresh pasta of Pappardelle With Corn (pictured above) is a light but satisfying dinner that’s easy enough to make on a weeknight. To prepare the sauce, sauté sweet grape tomatoes with butter, garlic and tender corn kernels, then toss with pappardelle noodles — long, flat, wide ribbon-shaped pasta — and add fragrant scallions, nutty Parmesan cheese and basil. The recipe calls for chicken broth, but you can substitute vegetable in order to maintain a meatless meal.
Read more »
Here in Food Network Kitchens, we love simple, classic recipes. We are also paid to think about food all day. So we’ve taken classic foods and drinks and reimagined them into three, four or five different ways. No standard recipes here, just the occasional technique and pictures. Think of it as a picture recipe.
We can’t get enough corn in the summer. Whether you try these recipes this Fourth of July or keep them in your back pocket for upcoming barbecues, we came up with these variations so you could eat corn every day and not get bored.
First, start with the classic version
Each month, Food Network Magazine puts chefs from Food Network Kitchens to the test: Create three recipes that put a new spin on a pantry staple like apple juice or mixed nuts.
Creamed corn is a staple around the holidays, but how do you jazz up the canned version without doing the same ol’ boring thing?
That’s where Loan Malonzo, Santos Loo and Leah Brickley come in. These three chefs transformed this old-fashioned classic into corn puffs, tamales and ice cream.
Read more »
It’s week four of our season-long garden party, Summer Fest 2011, where we welcome food and garden bloggers to feature garden-to-table recipes and tips. We’ll help you to enjoy all that this season has to offer. So far, we’ve delved into cherries and cucumbers. This week we’re getting creative with corn.
If you’ve been counting down all season long for sweet, crisp corn, the wait is finally over. Whether you roast corn on the stove or set it to sizzling on the grill, you can make juicy kernels the star of main dishes with a Southwestern flair.
Try Guy’s hearty Roasted Corn Quesadillas, bursting with corn, jalapenos, red onions, bell peppers and black beans for an easy weeknight meal. Add some chicken to the mix and you’ve got Robin’s Chicken Tostada With Corn, Pickled Jalapenos and Black Beans. Her cilantro-lime vinaigrette makes this Southwestern main the life of the party.
More corn recipes from family and friends »
Every week, Alex Guarnaschelli, host of Alex’s Day Off, shares with readers what she’s eating — whether it’s from the farmers’ market or fresh off the boat, she’ll have you craving everything from comfort food to seasonal produce.
It’s hard to beat the taste of corn bought from a roadside stand — just driving past a cornfield makes my mouth water. I imagine taking the corn off the grill and watching the butter melt over the kernels — the salt, the first bite. Nothing beats it. Here are some of my favorite tips for purchasing and preparing corn:
1. I always pick corn where the husk clings tightly to the cob; they are the most freshly picked. Similarly, I avoid buying cleaned corn wrapped in plastic or trimmed on both ends for “easier” eating. They tend to be dry and less fresh. The more “whole” you buy your vegetables, the better.
Find out how to grill corn after the jump »