The Best Basic Grilled Corn Recipe

Why It Works

  • Shucking the corn before grilling imparts smoky, charred flavor to the kernels, which you don’t get from grilling corn in the husk.
  • Grilling your corn naked also helps it cook faster.

I ‘ve had three great corn epiphanies in my animation. The most late was when my short sister showed me the best, fastest direction to prepare newly corn whiskey on the hazelnut indoors. * Before that, a college acquaintance showed me that you can throw hale corn in the husk on the embers of a campfire and, preferably than burning into obliviousness, it emerges blackened on the outside and absolutely steamed in the middle .

But the beginning was the most authoritative.

* Place a whole, un-shucked ear of corn in the microwave. Microwave it for three minutes. It is now absolutely cooked, and you are welcome .

It happened on a first-grade field trip to an upstate New York farm, in which the kids piled onto a tractor for a enlistment of the corn fields. I remember the farmer plucking an ear off the stalk as we rode by and passing it back to Daniel Powell, * * who took a bite, rolled his eyes a morsel, then passed the ear on to me. All of this would have long ago been lost, packed away in some out of practice cabinet in the attic of my memory, had it not been for the one crystallize here and now that came future : I bit into that corn whiskey and tasted for the first time what 100 % fresh-off-the-cob corn can truly taste like. Sweet, blue as an apple, and packed with flavor .

* * The same Daniel Powell who once tricked me into eating arctic cement ( and subsequently told the teacher when I got a stomachache ), and, in a offprint incident, stapled my hand to the table .

Three corn varieties.
serious Eats / J. Kenji López-Alt
It illustrates the first step to actually great broiled corn : start with the freshest corn potential. Whether you start with a yellow, blank, or bicolor variety show, a soon as it comes off the vine, corn sugars undergo enzymatic reactions that slowly convert them into bland, mealy starches. Though producers are intemperate at bring making corn that not only is sweeter off the stalk but, more importantly, stays sweeter for longer ( the Wikipedia entrance on sweet corn varieties is fascinating ), your best bet for tasty corn is inactive to buy it as local and fresh as possible—preferably picked that dawn and sold at a farmers market or farm stand—and to cook it a soon as you get it home plate .

Let ‘s start with what kind of grill you should use. If you want charcoal, check out our recommendations for the best charcoal grills.

So what ‘s the best way to grill corn ? I frequently use three different methods, and each has its advantages and drawbacks. here they are.

method acting 1 : In the Husk

Corn in its husk
unplayful Eats / J. Kenji López-Alt
Ah, thoroughly old epiphany number two. Grilling corn in the husk is easy and tasty and gives you a neat, built-in handle—just fold back the chaff to reveal the steam corn within. Some folks recommend peeling back the husk, removing all the silk, then folding the husk back into place, but I find this to be more disturb than it ‘s worth. good peel the silk binding along with the chaff when you shuck it after cooking .

If you want to get in truth fancy, you can peel back the husk, remove the silk, and add some season butter before folding the chaff back. This has the advantage of making your corn look charming, but, in terms of improved season or fudge qualities, it very does n’t offer more than just rolling the cob in season butter after cooking .

How to do it: Place corn in the chaff, directly on top of blistering coals, and cook, turning occasionally, until it is steamed through to the center ( you can peek and rewrap the corn to check if you need to ), about 15 minutes. The corn can besides be grilled in the chaff on a rack above the coals. The outside should be wholly black, but the interior should be steamed and damp. Let the corn cool slightly, pull back the husk and silk, paradiddle in season or plain butter if desired, and serve .

Advantages:  It ‘s super, ace easily on the homework. You can simply buy ears of corn and haul them out to the backyard or campfire, no other work required. It besides produces flavorful corn with lightly grassy notes from the husk .

Disadvantages: It can be a little messy to eat ( the blackened chaff gets on your hands ), and it can sometimes be difficult to gauge, timing-wise, whether or not the corn inside is wholly cooked. This method acting besides will not produce a char or grilled spirit .

method 2 : Wrapped in Foil

A shucked corn wrapped in foil
It ‘s very similar in process to the in-the-husk method, but there are a few differences here and there in how the corn ends up .

How to do it: Shuck corn and discard silk and chaff. Wrap the corn in heavy-duty aluminum thwart, with or without a season butter or vegetable oil inside. Grill immediately on hot coals, or on top of a grate set over the coals, turning occasionally, until the corn whiskey is fully cooked, about 15 minutes .

Advantages: Very easy to serve—just pull the corn off, let it rest, and serve. The thwart will besides keep the corn hot for a long time, making this a good method acting to use for bombastic gatherings or buffet-style service. As with in-the-husk corn, flavored butter inside the package is a neat whoremaster, but does n’t produce markedly ranking results to merely coating the corn in flavored butter after cooking .

Disadvantages: It ‘s heavy on homework, requiring shuck, houseclean, and rewrapping .

method acting 3 : grill Naked

A shucked corn
serious Eats / J. Kenji López-Alt
That ‘s the corn naked, not you, of course. This is my personal favored way to grill corn. It results in corn with charred, browned, balmy bits that in truth make it taste, well, grilled. And is n’t that what this is all about ?

How to do it: Shuck and cleanse corn. Do n’t worry about getting every last digress objet d’art of silk—they ‘ll burn aside on the grill anyhow. Do not be tempted to brine your corn. place the corn directly over a very hot fire, and grill, turning occasionally, until it ‘s charred and cooked through, about 10 minutes total. Serve immediately with flavored or plain butter and salt .

Advantages:  It ‘s quick and slowly, it lets you keep an eye on the corn as it grills, and it produces enough of smoky, charred, grilled relish .

Disadvantages: The corn wo n’t be quite adenine blue as corn steamed in the chaff or in foil.

Grilled corn, nicely charred.
serious Eats / J. Kenji López-Alt
We may not be able to agree on the best means to grill corn, but let ‘s at least have a delectable ear or two shoved in our mouths while arguing over it, okay ?


3 Ways to Grill Corn

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