*We chatted with Dirt Candy’s vegetable wizard/chef Amanda Cohen (and author of the just-out-this-week “Dirt Candy: A Cookbook,”) about how to use all of your delicious summer produce. Check out her thoughts on grilled spinach here
Corn’s peak season is usually at the beginning of August, but Cohen says she started seeing the sweet veggie at the farmer’s market as early as a couple of weeks ago.
As a kid, she remembers eating fresh-from-the-farmstand corn raw. But for those who want to cook their corn, she’s got some tips.
“It’s so easy to grill corn,” she says. At the restaurant, she removes the corn’s silk, and its outer husks. She then soaks the corn in water (so the husks won’t burn) and throws it on the grill.
She recommends putting salt and olive oil, or garlic butter on the corn cob before placing it on the grill (pull the husk back while you do that, and then place it back on afterward). Put it on a medium-high grill for five-10 minutes, turn it once or twice to make sure all sides get grilled.
Cohen has ideas for corn-off-the-cob, too. If your place isn’t too hot (and/or you’re cranking up the a/c), roast the corn kernels with some salt and olive oil at 350 for about 15 minutes.
“Roasting corn gives it a different — almost chewy — texture. The sugars start to caramelize and it really brings out the incredible sweetness,” Cohen says. She recommends throwing it in with the aforementioned spinach salad or your favorite pasta. “It adds an amazing richness to it.”
Lastly, Cohen says that she’ll sometimes take raw corn kernels and throw them into a blender with some water. She’ll then take that thick corn “cream” and pour it on top of pasta. “You get this rich corn explosion in your mouth,” she says.
Amanda Cohen’s Grilled Corn in the Husk
4 ears of corn still in its husk
1/4 cup of softened unsalted butter
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon minced garlic
2 tablespoons of minced herbs (whatever you have on hand: parsley, cilantro, basil, as long as you like the taste)
1) Pull the husks back from the corn and remove the silks without removing the husk.
2) Pull the husks back up over the corn and soak the ears in water for a few minutes.
3) Remove from the water and shake off any excess liquid.
4) In a bowl mix the salt, garlic, herbs and butter until they form a paste.
5) Pull the husks back down and spread the butter mixture evenly between over the corn on all four ears.
6) Pull the husks back up and place on a very hot grill.
7) Grill on each side for about 3 minutes. Remove from grill, remove the husk, and eat.