Sex is good, but not as good as fresh sweet corn.
– Garrison Keillor
But, without going quite as far as Mr. Keillor, I will admit that there is something special about fresh sweet corn, prepared the day it was picked and eaten outdoors with friends and family, good barbecue and just a few wasps buzzing around to remind you that nothing this side of heaven is perfect.
I don’t know who buys the “fresh” corn available right now in those little cellophane-wrapped packages of anemic, plasticky cobs, which were definitely not picked today or yesterday or, maybe not even last week. Desperately lonely people, I suppose, if Mr. Keillor’s hypothesis is to be believed.
For those of us who choose to wait, there is something to get us through till summer and it too comes wrapped in plastic. When I first read this recipe for frozen corn, I was dubious. It wasn’t till I finally made it that I realized just how good frozen corn can be. Luisa Weiss of The Wednesday Chef was pretty confident it would change the way I think about corn. And she was right. Here’s what she said:
“But that corn. That corn! It was the star, the bright and shining thing on my plate that actually made me smile as I ate, because it has been far too long since something as wonderful, as cheap and quick and as special as this unassuming little side dish came along, and in one fell swoop that corn made me fall in love – in love! with frozen corn!”
Now that I think of it, she sounds a little bit like Garrison Keillor.
Caramelized corn with mint
Adapted from The Wednesday Chef
2 cups frozen premium corn
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
2 tablespoons fresh mint, finely chopped
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Let the corn defrost in a colander for about half an hour, rinsing and tossing occasionally.
Heat a large cast iron pan over medium high heat and melt the butter. Add the corn and, stirring frequently, cook for about 10 minutes until corn is golden brown. Stir in mint, season with salt and pepper and serve hot. Enjoy.