Monday, June 1, 2009

Grilled Corn on the Cob: Summer, She Comes

My heart grows about 47 sizes every time a new Pixar movie comes out. This weekend, I had the pleasure of seeing Up, and the first 20 minutes left me a gooey, soggy mess. So much so, that I had to hide my snotty, tear-stained face in my shirt so the seven-year-old girl next to me wouldn’t think I was a big loser.

When I finally stopped openly weeping, it occurred to me that Pixar movies have become one of the things I most look forward to with the coming of summer. Also included: my backyard, eating outside, cold beer, iced coffee, wandering the main branch at the Brooklyn library, air-conditioned subway cars, besuboru, sundresses, late sunset, tomatoes, peppers, and sweet corn.

An Ohio native, sweet corn on the cob is the Husband-Elect’s favorite thing in life (besides cars that turn into robots). I try to indulge him as much as I can, though I don’t think I really understood how to prepare it correctly until this weekend. But that all changed, thanks to the aptly-named

Apparently (and I did not know this) soaking the corn in the husk before hand helps A LOT. See, once the cob is placed on the grill, the wet leaves simultaneously roast and steam the kernels. The result is perfectly tender corn with a delicious char-tinged flavor. It’s a thing to behold, and a better thing to eat.

One thing: take care not to let the cob sit too long after grilling. I prepared corn twice this weekend using this method, and the first time they rested for almost 45 minutes. The taste was lukewarm and a little dry. The second time, we ate it immediately, and it was much, much better.

Happy summer, everyone. Don’t forget: see Up (bring tissues), and eat corn. In that order, if you can.

P.S. Incidentally, Up started a discussion about ranking Pixar films. There have been ten so far, and here’s how I’d put them (1 = best, 10 = not worst - there are no bad Pixar movies. So maybe least best?) Readers, how would you rank them?

1. Finding Nemo
2. Toy Story 2
3. The Incredibles
4. Up
5. Wall-E
6. Toy Story
7. Ratatouille
8. Monsters, Inc.
9. A Bug’s Life
10. Cars

Grilled Corn on the Cob
Serves 1
Adapted from

1 ear corn with husk still on
Salt and pepper

1) Carefully peel back corn husk to reveal kernels and silk. Remove all silk, and put the husk back where it was, taking care to cover any errant kernels.

2) Soak corn in a pot of cold water for at least 30 minutes. Make sure to weigh it down so it stays under water.

3) Remove corn from water, and shake off to get rid of extra moisture. Place on a grill over medium-high heat, and cover. Cook for 30 minutes, or until entire husk is crispy and dark brown. Take care to turn every 5 minutes or so.

4) Remove from heat, shuck, and rinse quickly in warm water to get rid of any extra ash. Add salt and pepper to taste and eat immediately.

Approximate Calories, Fat, and Price Per Serving
93 calories, 4.2 g fat, $0.36

1 ear corn: 59 calories, 0.4 g fat, $0.33
1 teaspoon butter: 34 calories, 3.8 g fat, $0.02
Salt and pepper to taste: negligible calories and fat, $0.01
TOTAL: 93 calories, 4.2 g fat, $0.36


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