Corn is delicious and versatile food. Whether you prefer corn dishes to be sweet, savory, or somewhere in between, it always satisfies.
Businesses also make good profit in corn by taking advantage of online marketing and sales opportunities.
This article rounds up all the interesting facts about corn and some common ways to cook it so that you can learn more about this delicious diet staple.
Corn is best planted after the soil temperature reaches 16oC, typically two to three weeks after the last frost in spring.
It’s unlikely for corn to germinate if you plant it in cold, wet soil. Corn grows best in air temperatures from 16oC to 35oC.
In addition, it can take 60 to 100 days for corn to reach harvest, depending on how hot the weather is during the growing season.
Planting and Spacing Corn
Make sure to sow corn 2.5 cm deep and then plant the seeds 5 to 10 cm apart in short, side-by-side rows to form a block.
When you plant corn in a block, it’ll ensure pollination. Remember that corn planted too closely will require more fertilizer and water and yet offer a smaller yield.
To ensure a continuous harvest, you should plant early and succeedingly every two weeks.
Watering Corn Plants
Water your corn regularly, and make sure to keep it evenly moist. Corn grows fast in hot weather and needs an even supply of moisture to prevent wilting.
In addition, avoid overhead watering once you see tassels appear. When you water the tassels at the time of pollination, it can reduce the number of kernels on a cob.
Since corn is a heavy nitrogen user, side-dress it with aged compost tea when stalks are 10 inches tall. Repeat the process when they’re 18 inches tall and another time when they tassel.
It would be best if you weed corn early to prevent competition for nutrients and water. Corn is shallow-rooted, so make sure to avoid deep cultivation.
To protect your corn from birds, you must cover the ears with paper bags after pollination.
Depending on the warm weather, it takes anywhere between 60 and 100 days for corn to reach harvest. You know it’s ready for harvest when silks turn brown, the ears turn dark green, and the kernels are soft and plump.
When you squeeze the kernel, you’ll notice that the juice is milky instead of clear. Pick corn by grabbing the ear and giving it a sharp downward twist.
Remember that harvest usually comes 20 days after the silks appear. Make sure to harvest corn in the morning and plunge its ears immediately into cold water to preserve its sweetness.
Ways to Cook Your Fresh Sweet Corn
The best way to enjoy corn is to serve it within 20 minutes after picking. It’s doable if you’re growing your corn.
However, if you don’t grow your corn, then make sure to choose one that’s picked in the last day or two.
When the corn is picked, its sugars gradually convert to starch, reducing its natural sweetness. For this reason, you’ll enjoy fresh-picked corn the most.
Curious about the different ways on how to cook your fresh sweet corn? Below are some corn cooking tips you can try.
Boiling Corn on the Cob
First, you should strip off the corn’s outer leaves, leaving two to three inches of stalk on the ear. After that, pull off the silks or tassels.
Bring a big pot of water to a boil, with some salt added. Go to the garden plot and select the perfect ears. Look for creamy and solid ones with little pearl kernels at the tips.
Rush back to your kitchen and strip off the husks and then place the corn into the boiling water and boil for six minutes. Heap the cooked corn on a platter with a mound of butter and sprinkle some salt to taste.
Sauteeing Corn Off the Cob
To saute the corn, you should first husk it and remove the silk. Cut the kernels from the ears using a sharp knife. Then, scrape all the milk and sugar from the cob.
Next, melt butter in a pan over medium heat. When it’s already bubbling, put the kernels in the pan and saute them gently until the corn is cooked. It usually takes four minutes.
Ensure to shake the pan often so the corn won’t stick to it. Add pepper in the last minute of cooking. Then, spoon the corn into a serving dish and sprinkle some salt.
From desserts to street food, corn is delicious in both sweet and savory recipes. You can even cook it in a variety of ways.
You can also grow corn yourself. Just follow the tips above, and you’ll enjoy your corn harvest from farm to table.
How to Grow Corn
Seven Easy Ways to Cook and Serve Sweet Corn