Corn 101

August 11, 2015 | Posted by The B-Team

Corn is busting out all over in late summer! Everywhere you look you will see bright green husks piled high in your grocery store or on the stands at your local farmer’s market. Before you fill your cart or recyclable bag here’s a few things you should know.

The most common varieties of corn in the USA are yellow, white and bi-color (bi-color is typically only seen on the east coast) and also goes by the name of “butter and sugar.”

Corn is in season from May through September but really peaks in the month of August.

Look for ears that are fully encased in bright-green husks and topped with golden-brown tassels. Pull back just enough of the husks to make sure the kernels are in tight rows and haven’t begun to dimple. If the kernels have dimples, it means that the corn is beginning to lose it sweetness.

Buy fresh corn that's just been picked at a local farm, or corn that's been kept in a cool place. Corn from other areas will be fine for dishes using cut or scraped corn but not so great for eating on the cob.

For the best flavor, use fresh corn the day you buy it but if you can’t, keep it in the refrigerator until ready to cook it for up to 3 days.

Corn Factoids

One bushel of corn weighs 56 pounds

Corn is America's largest crop and accounts for more than 90 percent of the total value and production of feed grains.

Family farmers grow 90 percent of America's corn.

The United States produces 40 percent of the world's corn, more than any other country.
In the United States, 87 percent of all the corn is grown utilizing only naturally occurring rainfall.

As of 2008, the top four corn-producing states were Iowa, Illinois, Nebraska and Minnesota, together accounting for more than half of the corn grown in the United States.

According to the USDA, one acre of corn removes about 8 tons of carbon dioxide from the air in a growing season, more than is produced by your car annually.

Boiled Corn
Boiling corn on cob is the most common method of cooking in the US. Here’s a simple recipe that works every time:

Drop shucked corn into a large pot of salted boiling water and boil for 4 to 8 minutes, depending on size and maturity of corn. After 4 minutes, remove an ear and cut off a few kernels to taste; it should be slightly crisp. If the kernels still taste slightly raw, return to the pot for a few more minutes. Drain and serve hot with plenty of butter and salt!