Take advantage of fresh sweet corn when it's at season's peak by cutting it off the cob. Once
cut, there are endless ways to use corn, including freezing it for the off-season.
Corn cut from the cob has amazingly sweet flavor that purchased frozen or canned corn can't deliver. Even freezing your own cut corn retains its flavor and texture well. (See how to freeze cut corn below.) Sweet corn season runs from May through September, depending on where you live. Buying local is ideal with sweet corn because of its short shelf life. Choose ears with plump, milky kernels that run all the way to the tip in tightly packed rows. As soon as the ears are picked, the sugars start converting to starch, reducing the corn's natural sweetness. Cook or blanch and freeze corn the day it is picked or refrigerate for up to 1 day.
With your hands, pull off the husks and silks, section by section, from the ear of corn. Once the husks are removed, use a stiff brush to remove the remaining silks. You can also do this by hand, but it's a bit tedious.
Steady the ear of corn with one hand and face the stem away. Use a sturdy chef's knife to cut off the stem. Rinse the ear.
This is optional since you can cut raw corn from the cob, but if you want to freeze cut corn, blanch the ears first. Bring a large pot of water to boiling. Have a large bowl of ice water ready. Place a few ears of corn at a time in the boiling water. Cook for 4 minutes. Using tongs, remove the corn and plunge it into the ice water until cool. Drain excess water from the ears over the bowl.
Place an ear of corn, cut side down, on a cutting board, holding it near the top of the ear. Using a sharp knife, start at the top and cut downward with a gentle sawing motion, cutting corn from the cob at about two-thirds the depth of the kernels. Continue cutting until all of the corn is removed.
To Freeze Cut Corn
Add blanched and cooled cut corn to freezer-safe bags or containers with a measuring cup. Squeeze the air from the bags, if using, and seal. Label each bag or container with contents, amount, and date. Freeze for up to 8 to 10 months.
To Cook Cut Corn
In a saucepan, bring a small amount of salted water to boiling. Add 2 cups cut corn, cover, and cook for 4 minutes. Or, to microwave, place 2 cups cut corn in a casserole dish with 2 tablespoons water. Microwave, covered, on 100 percent power (high) for 5 to 6 minutes, stirring once. Drain corn.
Corn Recipes to Try