In our last trip to the farmer’s market, your editor focused his energies mostly on heirloom tomatoes – and what tomatoes they were. This weekend, however, we’re taking a closer look at some of the other bounty of summer: sweet corn.
Corn, in general, has a number of things going for it: it’s colorful, nutritious and simple to prepare in a number of ways ( I prefer roasted or grilled, husk on for straight ears). Of course, what that list lacks, at least for much of the year, is taste. This isn’t a surprise; after all, most of the year we’re talking about corn moving through the agribusiness infrastructure in ways that would make a Slow Food-ite barf up their locally sourced organics. But thankfully, for a few months of late summer, corn becomes a local delight, with multiple delicious varieties available everywhere, from farmer’s markets to Safeway.
I’ve seen a number of different varieties of sweet corn around town in the past two weeks; in fact, I bought some about two weeks ago. Unfortunately it was a mess – mealy, with shriveled kernels. I had to cook the hell out of it, and mix it with store bought corn to get a passable dish. I was surprised, frankly. This weekend’s trip to my local farmer’s market, however, would prove completely different. What a difference a few weeks make. This weekend, I bought beautiful bi-color corn at the U st. farmer’s market. I can’t remember the name of the stand, but in the future, there will be copious shout-outs, I promise.
As I mentioned above, I prefer my corn oven roasted (or grilled) in the husk. But this recipe calls for a slightly different presentation: the corn kernels are cut from the cob, then pan roasted in a cast iron skillet. With fresh corn, it’s truly delicious and a truly simple, yet versatile recipe.