Sweet Corn Day

One of my favorite fresh vegetables from the garden is sweet corn. But then maybe tomatoes, cucumbers, beans. limas, spring onions, lettuce all rival for top of the list!!! It is just hard to beat homegrown veggies that you harvest and eat the same day. They are all my favorites. Normally I chose my meat and plan my meal around it. But in the summer I plan my meal around my vegetables, often having multiple vegetables the same meal.

Yesterday was sweet corn day. Jill, Karla and Ryan came and in a little over three hours we harvested, shucked, silked, washed, blanched and froze 5 pints and 34 quarts of Honey Select sweet corn and cleaned up the mess! My favorite for years has been the Incredible variety but I was getting a little disappointed in how it was losing some of its sweetness in the freezer and decided to try something different this year. So far I am very impressed. The ears were large and the flavor excellent. Time will tell how it freezes. That is the real test of quality.

Honey Select Sweet Corn

The last several years we started having deer and coon problems. About two weeks ago, the deer snacked on my tomatoes stripping a significate amount of the leaves off several plants. War was declared! Gene came to my aid and erected a temporary electric fence; high enough to repel deer and low enough to zap the coons. In case you don’t know both deer and coons love sweet corn and can wreck havoc in one night, usually the night before you plan to harvest. I have a gorgeous garden this year and did not want to share with cute eyes and trophy horns!

Beautiful large ears of corn
Hopefully a deer and coon proof fence.
Gene and Karla pulling the corn. We always pick early in the morning.
Ryan carrying the full buckets to the husking table.
The husking table is set up under a shade tree to minimize the hot sun on the corn. We ended up with 185 ears of corn (10 we ate for lunch)
Shucking, silking and trimming off wormy spots.
Washing and removing the remaining silk.
I blanched the corn in boiling water for two minutes and then put into a sink of tap water to cool a few minutes before moving to an ice-cold bath to finish cooling. Blanching is important as it stops the enzyme action which causes loss of flavor, color and texture.
We used a corn cutter. I have it set to make a nice kernel and cream mix.
We cut some off with a knife as Jill wanted whole corn for soups.

Mother always said that you run from the garden with your sweet corn; meaning you process as fast as possible for good quality corn in the freezer. The sugar in the corn starts turning to starch as soon as it is picked so it is important to get it in the freezer as quickly as possible. If you pick your corn in the morning for supper, put it in the refrigerator with the husks on until you are ready to cook it. I never pick one day and process the next.

We had a good assembly line going and it was fun work and not so hard on anyone. The yield was 2.5 ears per pint which is really, really good. I had done the processing of my corn earlier in the week so Jill went home with a good winter supply, maybe 2 winters.

After Ryan finished washing the corn, he went with Grandpa and got to have his first tractor driving experience. I think it was a little intimidating! He has his learners but it is a whole lot different climbing into a “big” tractor and shifting gears! I would have gotten a picture if I had known it was taking place.

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