I have mentioned my friend Tanis in a lot of posts and I am very happy that she managed to squeeze in some time for this guest post amidst her busy schedule. Freezing corn is something that she does every year with her family. Along with the pictures she also gave me a couple of bags for the final pictures and I promptly finished them off the moment the pictures were done. They were so tasty. There is surely something about that mildly sweet corn that is partially frozen. Even if you do not want to make a big batch to freeze, you can sure try this with a smaller batch and have it for a healthy evening snack. Thank you Tanis for taking the time and for sharing the recipe. Off to Tanis.
Growing up, my dad planted a large garden with sweet corn. Every summer my sister and I spent Sunday afternoons watering the garden and irrigating the rows of corn. It was quite the system that emulated that of the large farms in our rural area.
My mom would often freeze bags of corn to enjoy through the winter. My husband’s family would also freeze fresh sweet corn. The method I use is that of my mother-in-law’s who learned from her mother who learned from her mother-in-law. It’s a tedious process, but worth the hours of work for the taste of summer during the cold winter. This method results in a sweet and cream-like corn versus a large kernel frozen corn. My husband will only eat this frozen corn and I look forward to introducing our newborn son, in time, to the family corn. Thank you ‘Cooks Joy’ for allowing me to document the method and I must apologize my photos are not of her quality.
Step by step recipe to freeze sweet corn.
1. Buy the corn early in the morning from the farmer's market or local farm. Fresh picked corn is best. Shuck the corn and place the ears in a cold water bath.
2. While the corn cobs are soaking, start boiling water and one teaspoon of sugar in large pots.
3. Remove the corn from the water bath and eliminate any remaining silk (the strings inside the husk) from the corn.
4. Once the water is at a rolling boil, add the corn and cover. My pots hold 7 to 8 ears.
5. Wait for the water to boil again, then cover and set the timer for 7 minutes.
6. Prepare three ice baths while waiting for the water to boil. I use both sides of the sink and a cooler. My mil has a utility sink for her third ice bath.
7. Remove the corn and place in the first ice bath following the 7 minute boil.
8. Add another batch of corn to the pots and repeat steps 5 and 7.
9. Once the corn warms the first ice bath, move the cobs to the second ice bath. When the second ice bath has cooled the corn completely, move the corn cobs to the third ice bath.
10. Continue to add ice to the first and second baths to keep the water cold.
11. Whew, the corn is cooked and cooling! Take a break or do some cleanup and let the corn chill in the third bath.
12. When the third bath is too cold to remove the corn by hand, it is time to slice the corn off the cob. Use tongs to remove a few corn cobs at a time from the cold bath. Don't remove them all at once, let the others continue to chill while cutting from the cob.
13. Choose your favorite knife and gather some metal pans. Metal pans are important for the freezing process.
14. Cut the corn off the cob, about 3/4 of the kernel, leaving some to scrape. This is an important step to not cut against the cob.
15. When all the kernels are removed from the cob, scrape the cob with the knife. Scraping the cob will remove the sweet middle of the kernel.
16. Place the full metal pans in the freezer. Another big step completed and time for another break or cleanup.
17. Wait for the corn to crystallize in the freezer. This may take several hours depending on the size of pan and freezer temperature.
18. Once the corn is slightly frozen and crystallized, remove one pan at a time and place portions in a dated quart freezer bag. The amount of corn per bag can vary according to family size. This year the baggies were filled with approximating 1-1/2 cups of corn for dinner for two. We had 24 bags for five dozen sweet corn. My mother-in-law froze 6 dozen and filled 25 fuller bags. Fill the bags to the portion size that works best for your family.
19. Flatten the bags to remove the air (plus flat bags store better in the freezer) and enjoy fresh sweet corn all winter!
Bags labeled and ready for freezer.