Every year we freeze corn for the upcoming year. To be exact we freeze between 5-6 dozen ears of corn for the upcoming year. It's a lot of work. I won't lie. But it's only one day of work for a whole year of yum, so we do it.
Today was the day. For the middle of August it was a gorgeous morning. It was crisp and cool and felt more like a morning in late September so we started with a walk. On the walk we found this moth. It has nothing to do with corn but it was beautiful.
After the walk the little ones went down for their morning nap. I went to the farmers market to get our corn. Corn that was picked that morning. Corn that still had the mornings dew on it.
This is what six dozen ears of corn looks like. These will not be the most "artistic" of pictures. I hope you can forgive me. This is what the process is really like here in our house. I did not do any kind of special props or cleaning. There was work to do.
Naiya, my husband, and I sat together in the beautiful morning shucking all of the corn. This is my favorite part because we are all together. We sit, we shuck, we talk, we eat fresh raw corn. Have you ever eaten fresh raw corn? It's so good that way.
When we were shucking I remembered that I had wanted to show a good example of a light tan tassel. I mentioned it in my last post on how to pick a good ear of corn without opening it. This is what I was talking about.
In previous years I had par boiled our corn inside on the stove. It heats up the house terribly. This year we were fortunate enough to have our friends propane smoker still at our house. We were able to use it as an outdoor cooker by putting my canning pot on it. The house stayed nice and cool this way.
When you are processing corn you want to par-boil it. This means to slightly cook it. I par-boil our corn for 3-4 minutes. I was taught to do this at the farmers market I worked at. They told me it keeps longer and better this way. This is also so that when you re-heat it you don't over cook it. They have been this a lot longer than I have so I take their word for it.
Here's your corn beauty shot
After you par boil the corn you need to put it in an ice bath to stop the cooking process. If you don't the corn will be chewy when you re-heat it. No one likes that, so make sure you put it in an ice bath.
I leave the corn in the ice bath as I process it. I just keep adding corn and ice as I go along. Any silks you miss come off during the par-boiling or the ice bath...for the most part.
The rest of the silks you have to pick off before you go to take the kernels off the cobs. Excuse the hair-do, or rather the lack of a hair-do.
This is the set up I use to get the kernels off the cob. It's just a cup (sometimes I use a small bowl) upside-down in a large bowl. Nothing fancy here. I know there are tools specifically designed for the sole purpose of removing kernels from the cob, but I am not a fan of uni-taskers. I haven't had any problems with this set up.
I do suggest putting on some music at this point. You will be there for awhile getting all of the corn ready to be frozen. I opted for something upbeat to help keep me going. This time it was Beck. The only drawback is that you may find yourself dancing around the kitchen a little bit.
To get all of the kernels of corn off the cob I use a sharp chef's knife. I put the ear of corn on the cup holding the tip of the corn in my hand. Then I just cut off the kernels and the bowl catches them. This is important; once you have cut the kernels off the cob, turn your knife and use the back of the knife to scrape the kernel bits and the milk from the corn out into the bowl. The milk is like liquid gold and you want that. Don't throw it away. That would just be a shame.
Once the corn is up to the level of the cup I bag it to freeze it.
I set up a bag inside of a measuring cup and use my canning funnel to direct the kernels into the bag. This keeps it pretty neat. Although there is always the occasional spill. But that's what my clean up crew is for.
Our kitty loves carbs so she is usually right there next to our pup to assist in the cleaning of any mishaps. I measure out 2 cups for each bag. It seems to work well for when I go to use the corn in recipes later on. I suck the air out of the bags and then they're ready for freezing.
I know, I know, we need to defrost the freezer. One day that will happen. This is just a small upright freezer we have in the basement to hold all of our frozen goods in the winter. But there it is...there's a whole row behind that row too.
Start to finish it took just under four hours to process the six dozen ears of corn. The total cost for the corn was $24. But we're done, and today's work will pay off in the middle of winter when we have fresh creamed corn on our table.