My in real life as well as twitter friend Jess (@bettingimnot) sent out an all call to the local twitter tweeps to see if anyone wanted to ‘put up corn’. For those of you who are not in south central Pennsylvania ‘putting up corn’ is a ‘Dutchy’ way of saying freezing or canning corn. When I refer to ‘Dutchy’ I am referring to the abbreviated term to describe the heritage of the Pennsylvania Dutch. Which in fact did not originate from Holland but Germany. Confused yet? Welcome to my world. In short we are going to freeze corn, people.
So I put my twitter hand up and volunteered to go check it out and see what it was all about. I had an idea but with anything everyone has their own technique and way of ‘putting up corn’. Some people just wing it where others have a precise and exact science of how it is too be done. Being the penny pinching blogger I am I just knew you would be wanting to see how this was done. In most parts of the country corn is fresh and ready for picking. If not it will be soon enough. So here is my tutorial on how to ‘put up’ or freeze corn. In the winter you will be glad you went through the effort when you enjoy the sweet taste of summer.
This particular day Jess and her family purchased 10 dozen ears of corn. The price was $3.50 per dozen but look at the beauty of this corn. Barely a missing kernel, plump, firm kernels and not a worm in sight! This price will give you an idea of the going price of corn and give you something to compare your local price.
First step is to husk the corn. Remove all the green leaves and yellow ‘hairs’ or the silk from all the corn. The husks, but not the cobs, are great for the compost. Go green and add them to your compost and give back to the earth what it gave you.
Next it is time to remove the kernals from the cob. The goal is to get as much of the kernel off is one swipe of the knife. It is not favorable to cut the tops off and leave most of the kernel on the cob. That corn is either wasted or take it off with another stroke and it will be mush when you cook it. When I say mush I am referring to cream style corn. If that is what you are looking for go with a 2 stroke technique.
Jess is using a OXO Good Grips Corn Stripper. I must say it did an EXCELLENT job. It shaved off big plump kernels in one swipe. Awesome. Also pictured is is a boning knife and another corn stripper. The ‘other’ corn stripper looks cute because it has a face on it but it is not functional. Just an FYI.
Now it is time to cook.
Pictured above is a before and after of the corn once cooked and ready for freezing.
I snapped a picture of the family recipe to share with you.
Measure out 4 quarts of fresh cut corn. Add 3 cups of water, 1 cup sugar and 2 teaspoons salt. The sugar just enhances the natural sweetness to the corn. If you like your corn straight of the cob either cut back to leave the sugar out completely.
Boil the corn for 15 minutes.
Now it is time to chill.
Cool the corn completely in an ice bath. This is important for 2 purposes. First it stops the cooking process of the corn and will help preserve the crispness of your fresh corn. Second it is good food handling practices to cool a hot item before freezing.
Now that the corn is cool it is time to freeze. Jess and her mom use freezer bags. Be sure to label and date your corn and rotate the corn from last year (if there is anything left) to the front of the freezer before you put your new corn in the freezer. They do 2 generous cup portions.
Remove the air from the bag before laying flat to freeze.
Jess ended up with 23 two cup bags. Let’s break that down for you:
10 dozen ears @ $3.50 per dozen = $35
Yields: 23 portions = $1.52 per portion
A portion feeds 4 people = $.38 per serving