Jersey Fresh sweet corn - eagerly anticipated after
a short delay in the start of the season -- is now
available at many farm markets, Agriculture Secretary
Charles M. Kuperus announced today. As quantities begin
to build, sweet corn will be increasingly available
on supermarket shelves beginning next week.
"While the cold and wet spring pushed back
harvests of sweet corn and other summer produce by
10 days or more, the good news is that it'll be worth
the wait," said Kuperus. "Nothing beats
the great taste of Jersey Fresh sweet corn, and this
year's crop will be no different."
When choosing corn, look for ears with bright green,
snugly fitting husks, and golden brown silk. Inside,
the kernels should come all the way to the ear's
tip, with tightly spaced rows, and appear plump and
milky. If pricked, a kernel should spurt milky white
juice. Choose ears with medium-sized kernels. Very
small kernels are immature, and large kernels have
a starchy taste. Yellow corn has larger, fuller-flavored
kernels, while white kernels are smaller and sweeter.
For best flavor, eat sweet corn as soon as possible.
Leaving husks on when storing corn helps preserves
the flavor. At room temperature, the glucose in corn
will convert to starch in as little as 24 hours,
so refrigeration is critical for maintaining freshness.
Corn absorbs odors from foods such as green onions,
so avoid storing with other produce. Keep unshucked
fresh corn in the refrigerator until ready to use,
wrapped in damp paper towels and placed in a plastic
bag. Refrigerate for no more than three days unless
it is freshly picked.
To prepare corn, husk and wash it, fill a pot three-quarters
full with water, boil the water, add the corn and
cook for about 5 minutes or to taste.
Last year, New Jersey farmers harvested 79.1 million
pounds of sweet corn on 8,500 acres. The crop was
valued at $17.2 million.
Following is a recipe for sweet corn from Jersey
Fresh Cooks, a cookbook available at local farm markets.
The recipe was submitted by JoAnne Ruscio of Lambertville.
For the location of farm markets or other information
on Jersey Fresh, visit the Jersey Fresh website at
Jersey Fresh Corn Cakes
1 cup cornmeal
¾ teaspoon baking soda
¼ teaspoon salt
1 large Jersey Fresh egg, beaten lightly
1 cup buttermilk
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
1 cup Jersey Fresh corn kernels, cooked and patted dry
additional buttermilk to thin batter, if needed
additional butter for grill
Whisk together until smooth the cornmeal, buttermilk,
baking soda, salt, egg and melted butter. Stir in
the corn and let the batter stand for 15-20 minutes.
If the batter is too thick, thin with additional
buttermilk. The consistency should be similar to
pancake batter. When the griddle is hot, brush with
melted butter and drop the batter by tablespoons
onto the griddle. Cook about one minute, turn and
cook about one minute more. You can make these corn
cakes in advance. Cover tightly and chill. Bring
to room temperature and re-heat in a foil-covered
baking dish for 10-15 minutes at 350 degrees. Do
not allow to dry out. Makes about 25 corn cakes.