Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Corn and Squash and Garden Talk

Menus this week:

Corn, tomatoes, cucumbers.
Corn, tomatoes, squash, chicken.
Corn, tomatoes, squash.
Tomato sandwiches.
Corn, steak, squash, salad.
Do you see a theme here?

Larry's corn patch--some of the stalks of sweet corn are around ten feet tall. I began to wonder if he'd planted field corn instead of sweet corn.
Corn is at the top of the agenda, and the menu. Right now our corn is at its peak, and it is something to experience. Did you know that two bushels of corn in the husk equals one bushel of husked corn which equals 8 quarts of frozen corn? Except tonight, one bushel of corn in the husk yielded 6 quarts of frozen corn.

A different variety meant smaller cobs, more corn. This year we raised Sunglow for early corn and froze corn on the cob. Next to come in was Seneca Chief, big ears of yellow corn that clean super easy, hardly any silk, and mighty tasty. Now the Honey and Cream corn is ripening--smaller ears, but extra sweet with both white and yellow kernels on the same cob. Hard to clean though, lots of silk and bits of husk to deal with. I had not noticed these differences in other years, mainly because usually I only grow Sunglow and Silver Queen. This year we experimented and I'm happy with the results. Seneca Chief is a keeper.

While I often can corn, freezing is much easier. And I'm out of pint jars, so freezing is the only sensible option because the two of us would never eat a quart of corn at one meal and it would go to waste.

To freeze, we cut the kernels off the cob, blanch for one minute in boiling water, dunk into cold water, spoon into bags and freeze. So far we have 14 quarts in the freezer and I expect to add another 8-10 quarts.

Every day that I am canning or freezing I bless my big enamel pans and wonder how I managed without them in the past. I bought them last year, some at an antique store (but at a good price), others at the Rockport auction for a song. One is a sieve, excellent for rinsing.

By this time next week, fresh corn will probably be a memory.

Of course, the Indian corn is nowhere near ready...


Jai Joshi said...

That is one heck of a lot of corn. It's a good job the Indian corn isn't ready.


margarethall said...

All that work....whew! But, the rewards are tremendous! I miss that work, actually. Your bounty is wonderful...and will doing some corn freezing from the farm markets here in Oregon...

Granny Sue said...

It is a lot of work, but it honestly the work is in the growing. Putting up most vegetables is a fairly quick process, especially if you have a big kitchen and the right equipment. Beets and beans take a lot of time, of course, if you can them, but freezing is quick. I just don't have a strong faith in my power company, especially in winter, so I prefer to can many things instead of depending on the freezer.

Janet, said...

Seneca Chief is what we always grew. That corn looks good. We always blanched the ears of corn, put them in ice water in the kitchen sink, then laid them out on towels on the kitchen table to dry and then cut the kernels off the cob. It's delicious.

Granny Sue said...

I agree, Janet. I've never grown Seneca Chief before. Silver Queen, Golden Queen, Illini Extra Sweet, Honey and Cream, even Hickory King and Bloody Butcher--but not Seneca Chief. I am very glad we tried it and it will be a staple of the garden in the future.

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