Fresh sweet corn on the cob is one of the summer vegetables I look forward to eating to the most. Coupled with a barbecue burger or juicy steak its one of the tastiest sides you can eat during the summer time.To taste the best, sweet corn should be eaten within 48 hours of being picked. The reason that corn should be consumed quickly is that after being picked the sugars in the corn immediately begin to break down and turn into starch. This starch is not sweet, makes the kernel tough and doesn’t have much flavor. Some people think that its the color of the corn that determines the sweetness of the ear of corn, however that assumption is incorrect. Its actually the freshness, readiness and genetics of the corn that determines the sweetness, texture and flavor.. Nothing is as disappointing as biting into an ear of corn that is tough and flavorless and tastes more like field corn than sweet, juicy corn on the cob. To help insure that the corn you pick is ready to be harvested, sweet and at its peak here are some answers to some basic questions about when corn should be picked.
All You Need To Know About When To Pick Corn
How Long Does It Take For Ears To Mature?
Depending on the type of corn you plant it can take anywhere between 58 and 92 days for a corn stalk to sprout, mature and produce ears of corn that are ready to harvest. Individual ears of corn are usually ready to harvest 20 days after the first corn silk strands appear.
How Can You Tell If an Ear Of Corn Is Ready To Be Picked?
An ear of sweet corn is ready to be picked when its in the “milk stage”. To check if the ear of corn you want to pick has reached this stage puncture a kernel of corn with your thumbnail. The juice inside the kernel should appear milky. Sweet corn will only remain in this stage for less than a week so check frequently as harvest time approaches.You can also tell that sweet corn is ready to harvest by the plumpness of the tip of the ear, firmness of the unhusked ear and the appearance of the silk tassel which will begin turning brown once the corn is reaching maturity.
Whats the Best Way To Remove Ears of Corn From The Cob?
Once an ear of corn is mature and ready to be removed from the stalk you can snap off the ear by hand with a downward twist. Never pull on the corn as it will remove the whole stalk and you won’t be able to harvest anything else should your stalk contain a second or even a third immature ear.
Whats The Best Way To Store Corn Before Cooking and How Long Can You Store It?
To retain the fresh sweet taste of the corn, ears should be eaten processed or refrigerated as soon as possible after harvesting. Sweet corn will immediately begin to lose its flavor so its best to use it immediately.If you do need to store it, place the unhusked ears of corn in a perforated bag in your refrigerator and plan on cooking within one to do days. Warmth speeds the conversion of the sugars to starch and leaving your corn out at room temperature for any length of time will decrease the sweetness and flavor of the ear.
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