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07 July 2012

Up To Our Ears in Corn

This is going to sound very naive of me to admit, but I was in high school before I realized that people bought their vegetables in cans from the grocery store.  Okay, maybe it was junior high.  But, still.  My pappaw had a huge garden that produced enough food for my grandparents and our family as well.  We would go out to our big freezer in the garage and get applesauce and corn or go to our pantry and get a jar of jelly or a jar of green beans {the best green beans you ever tasted.  ever.}.  I still remember being saddened when we ate the last jar of those green beans.  Mmm.

I have such fond memories of that garden and those fresh vegetables.  I can remember going out with my pappaw to dig up potatoes.  I remember sitting on the back deck with him and shelling lima beans.  I can remember going down to my grandparents' basement where they kept all of their food and their canning equipment.  It was way better than any grocery store.  It sounds so cliche to say it, but, Man, those were the good ol' days.

My mom might not have gotten her gardening skills from my pappaw, but she most certainly can cook like my mammaw.  {And, if I have never said it before, let me say it now.  She can throw a delicious meal together when you think there is nothing in your fridge or pantry to eat.}  The two things that my mom has frozen for us to enjoy year-round are freezer jams and sweet corn.  You may remember me making some strawberry freezer jam last year.  Oh how I miss those sweet California strawberries.  Our family has enjoyed the fruits {err, veggies} of my mom's labor this year with the freezer corn she put up last year and we knew that we would want to do it again this summer.

So, while my brother was in town, we made a family affair out of it and put up 27 bags of corn.  {My mom did 17 bags a couple weeks before, so there are 44 bags for us to scarf down over the course of the year.}

According to my mom, here are step by step directions for freezing corn.

1) Find sweet corn worthy of taking the time to freeze.

2) Shuck and silk the corn.

3) Boil corn for 3 minutes.

4) Place boiled corn in ice water (this is to stop the cooking and get the corn cool enough to cut off cob).

5) Cut corn off cob(s).

6) Fill freezer bags with corn and freeze.  I put two cups in each bag and flatten bags for easy storing.

When I am ready to fix the frozen corn, I put a small amount of milk and butter in a sauce pan and add the bag of frozen corn.  Cook and season with salt and pepper to taste.

My dad was the shucker.  He shucked and silked about 10 dozen ears.

My brother was in charge of boiling the corn and putting it in the ice bath.
Then he laid the corn out on the table for us to scrape.

My mom and I were in charge of cutting the corn off of the cob.  A couple of years ago, I got my mom this fancy tool from Pampered Chef.  And, she saw this trick on Pinterest to use the bundt pan to hold the cob in place and catch the kernels.

Mom was the scooper.

27 bags ready to put in the freezer!

I am so glad that we continued this tradition and hope that we do it for years to come.  It tastes so much better than any corn I've ever had from a bag or can.  I love that we utilized some of the tricks that my grandparents used as well -- my mom filled a milk jug up with water and froze it and kept that in the cooler with water to cool the cobs of corn.

Anybody else freeze anything?  A friend of mine who also has a big garden was telling me about freezing stuffed bell peppers.  I might have to try that.

1 comment:

Mom Cooper said...

My Dad would always say when we would be putting up corn, "this corn sure will taste good when the snow flies". Well, if we wait for the snow to fly here we would never get a chance to eat the fruit of our labor. However I am hoping we can hold out to try some until summer is over.

I too am glad that we are carrying on this tradition from Mom and Dad. I'm glad Amanda you can remember those summer days of being at your grandparents house as we prepared different foods for canning and freezing.

I wouldn't trade our family experiences/values for anything. We were/are so blessed in so many ways.

I hope when Olivia and Sydney are older, they too will have wonderful memories of time spent with their Nana and Poppy.