Tag Archives: creamed corn

Corn-ucopia

Have you got a cornucopia of corn starting to come in? Or maybe you just really enjoy crunching on fresh kernels from a grocery store? Well, if you want that great flavor to last, then try one (or all!) of these methods of preserving corn…

Instructions for freezing corn-on-the-cob, whole kernel corn, and cream style corn are in a previous post – Corn: On or Off the Cob.

If you’re wondering what to do with all those frozen corn kernels, or if you have 16 to 20 medium-sized ears, and you’re feeling a little zesty, then try making Pickled Corn Relish and processing it in a boiling water canner.

Corn in HuskThe rest of these canning recommendations are not pickled products, and so a pressure canner is required since corn itself is a low-acid food. Corn can be canned as Whole Kernel Corn or Cream-Style Corn. Sweet corn kernels may also go into a medley of Mixed Vegetables or Soup (note that the pressure canning process time varies – following the recommended process time is important to the safety of the final products…the soup has a lot more water to help distribute heat more quickly, and also less solids to have to penetrate through).

If your corn browns during canning, it usually means that the temperature required for canning is too high for the sugar levels in your corn variety.  This carmelization has become more of a problem as newer varieties of corn get sweeter and sweeter. You cannot safely reduce the heat or processing time needed for canning corn; you can freeze that corn or find a locally grown variety that is recommended for canning. Though not an immediate safety concern, you might want to consider refrigerating these jars and/or consuming them more quickly since they may not maintain the best quality for long.

Corn can also be dried, although consider your use of the kernels to decide if the texture is what you are seeking. Ears of popcorn can simply be left to air-dry on the stalks or at 130°F after harvest. For other varieties of corn, husk, trim, and steam blanch for 2 to 2-1/2 minutes or water blanch for 1-1/2 minutes. A test to check if it’s blanched enough is to cut into a kernel — if milk does not exude when the kernel is cut then it is adequately blanched. After blanching, cut kernels from the cob. Use a dehydrator try liner (or a cookie sheet if drying in the oven) so that the small pieces don’t fall through. Dry in an electric dehydrator at 140°F for 6 to 10 hours, longer in an oven. To rehydrate the kernels, soak each cup of corn in 2-1/4 cups water for 30 minutes.

Lastly, let’s not forget candy corn this time of year…it typically stores well on the counter in an airtight container (perhaps out of sight from children!).

 

Corn: On or Off the Cob

There’s nothing like eating fresh, flavorful corn-on-the-cob, grilled outside on a breezy summer day. But if you want to preserve some of that classic summertime treat for other seasons as well, then you might like to know about a few different ways to freeze corn.

Whichever freezing method you choose, select only tender, freshly-gathered corn in the milk stage. The milk stage is recognizable by plump kernels and a milky white fluid that secretes from cut kernels. (Some people even eat the kernels raw at this stage since this is when they are most sweet and moist). Husk and trim the ears, remove silks and wash well.

Blancher

Freezing Corn-on-the-cob is the only way to still bite it directly off the cob after freezing, but it is likely to become water-logged and mushy because it takes longer to blanch, freeze, and re-heat due to the presence of the dense cob. To freeze corn-on-the-cob, water blanch small ears (1¼ inches or less in diameter) for 7 minutes, medium ears (1¼ to 1½ inches in diameter) for 9 minutes and large ears (over 1½ inches in diameter) for 11 minutes. Cool promptly and completely to prevent a “cobby” taste. Drain and package. Seal and freeze.

Freezing Whole Kernel Corn is likely to produce crisper kernels than corn-on-the-cob, but must be eaten with a utensil or used as an ingredient in a recipe. To freeze whole kernel corn, water blanch 4 minutes. Cool promptly, drain and cut from cob. Cut kernels from cob about 2/3 the depth of the kernels. Package, leaving ½-inch headspace. Seal and freeze.

headspace_creamcorn

Freezing Cream Style Corn creates a creamy texture as a backdrop for the crisp kernels which stands alone as a side dish quite well, but does not necessarily mix into other recipes as well as whole kernel corn. To make cream style corn, water blanch 4 minutes. Cool promptly and drain. Cut kernel tips and scrape the cobs with the back of a knife to remove the juice and the heart of the kernel. Package, leaving ½-inch headspace. Seal and freeze.

Another way to prepare cream style corn for freezing is to cut and scrape the corn from the cob without blanching. Place the cut corn in a double boiler, and heat with constant stirring for about 10 minutes or until it thickens; allow to cool by placing the pan in ice water. Package, leaving ½-inch headspace. Seal and freeze.

These recommendations come from So Easy to Preserve and are also available on the NCHFP website. More freezing tips can be found at http://nchfp.uga.edu/how/gen_freeze.html.