Sunday, September 16, 2012

How to Freeze Sweet Corn

I love sweet corn on the cob in the summer! It's hard to get year round though, but if you buy some now, and freeze it for later, it's just about as good. My mom and I did just that today. She stopped by a local farm stand, that she's been going to for years to get corn, and picked up 4 dozen ears of corn for $20 (about 42 cents an ear). So, today I helped her freeze it. Here's how we did it, so that you can enjoy sweet corn off the cob all year round too!

1. Husk the corn. This is best done outside, as it get pretty messy! We threw the husk in the garden compost to make great soil for her garden next year.

Cute helpers always help get the job done!

2. Cut the corn off the cob. I saw a pin on Pinterest about using a bunt cake pan and an electric knife. We tried it out, and it worked great! Having tried it, I have two suggestions though. If you have your choice of bunt cake pans, choose the one that all once piece (I used the one that was two pieces, and the corn juice leaked out the bottom). Also, if you have the choice, I think the one with the smaller hole in the middle would work better than the bigger hole (I had an ear of corn slip right through it at one point!). Either way the electric knife makes it go WAY faster, and the bunt pan is great for catching all the kernels.

3. Clean the cob off. Some might say this is an optional step, as you have all the kernels, but you don't always get it all when you slice it off, so my mom took the cobs and held her knife perpendicular to the cob and ran it down all the sides. I guess we like to get every little last bit of the yummy stuff!

(Want to know what to do with the empty cobs? Check out this jelly recipe!)

4. Cook the corn. You're not cooking it entirely, but kind of like blanching it before you freeze it. This is the recipe we've been using for years. For the amount that we did, we had to use my mom's stock pot. If you're doing it on a smaller scale, you can use a smaller pot. Or, if you're doing a large amount, and don't have a stock pot, you can use several pots or do it in smaller batches.

8 cups raw sweet corn 
3/4 cup water
2 tsp sugar
1 tsp salt
1/2 to 3/4 stick butter or margarine (we probably used less than this, because when we're ready to eat it, we add more butter)

Bring to a boil, cook 3 minutes. Cool.

5. Package, label, & freeze. If you follow my blog, you know I always use empty sour cream, yogurt, butter, or other containers for freezer meals. Corn is no different! If you're not going to fill it all the way full, I would suggest putting a layer of cellophane right on top of the corn so there's less air around it to cause freezer burn.
(The ones in the box mom sent home with me!)
So from our 4 dozen ears of corn, we got 17 - 16 ounce containers, 3 - 12 ounce containers, and 14 - 8 ounce containers, or about 26 - 16 ounce bags that you would buy in the store. That's about 76 cents per bag, which is more than what I typically pay for frozen veggies, but I think the taste is totally worth it!

EDIT: We did this again this year (2015), but did 6 dozen ears of corn. Here was our results this year! We had 80 cups of corn!