Wednesday, August 1, 2012

How to Freeze Sweet Corn

As I've said before, there is nothing better than sweet corn in the summer...except maybe eating it in the winter too.  Although it's not been the best growing season, we were still able to purchase several dozen ears and put them up for this winter.

The first thing you want to do is not to let the sweet corn lay around.  Once you purchase it, start processing it that same day if at all possible.  This will help to ensure that you get the best flavor and quality out of the corn.  I usually enlist my husband to shuck the ears and remove the silks, but today, it was all me. 

If you have never frozen sweet corn before, Purdue University Extension offers an excellent publication called, "Let's Preserve Sweet Corn" with step by step instructions.

After all the corn had been shucked and washed, I was ready to begin the process...and it can be a messy one!  I began with a pot of boiling water and inserted several ears of corn at a time.  I cooked them for approximately 4 minutes and then inserted the ears into cold ice water.  This process is known as blanching.

After the corn had cooled off, I placed the corn in my (sterile - I clean it thoroughly before I use it in this manner) dish drainer.

By doing this, it allows any excess water to run back down into the sink and doesn't delay my cooking process.  The dish drainer also works well because it will hold several dozen ears of corn at once.

Once you're done blanching the corn, it is time to cut it off of the cob.  This is where you will get messy, but oh is it worth it!  I used a knife today, but Pampered Chef makes a kernel cutter that does wonders as well.  I usually find that cutting the cob upside down is easier for me.  After the cob is clean of corn, take your knife and run it back over the empty cob being sure to get all the little extra flavorful portions out of the cob.

Next, it is time to fill your quart size freezer bags.  My mother-in-law, who I miss dearly when I am doing stuff like this, had this wonderful little gadget that I use to hold my freezer bags open.  If you don't have one, simply fill your bag the old fashioned way.

Once the bag is full, squeeze all of the air out of it and seal it.  Be sure to label the bags with at least the month and year of freezing the corn so it doesn't stay in your freezer for several years.

There you have it!  Simple, easy steps to freezing sweet corn!  The work is worth it in the winter time:)

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