Corn Sweet

Pick sweet corn ears when the kernels are not fully mature. Sweet corn is ready to pick when the juice from a kernel punctured with a fingernail appears opaque rather than clear. It should not be thick or doughy. Kernels reach this stage about 20 days after the appearance of the first silk strands and the stage lasts a week or less, depending on the cultivar. At harvest, the kernels should be smooth and plump even near the tip of the ear. The husk on the ear will be tight and green and the pollination silks will be dry. Check ears frequently so as not to miss the perfect harvest stage. To harvest, snap off the ears by hand with a quick, firm, downward push, twist, and pull.

Use Storage Method 1. The ears should be eaten, processed, or chilled as soon as possible after harvesting. The sugars in the kernels start turning to starch soon after picking and the corn loses its sweet taste. The newer sugary enhanced and super sweet cultivars of corn will keep their sweetness longer after harvest under proper storage conditions. Average storage time is 2 to 10 days.

I Nutrition note: 1/2 cup cooked corn contains 89 calories and 2.3 grams fiber. It is a good source of thiamin (12% DV). Color = yellow.

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