July 6, 2010
What a weekend!
30 ears of corn doesn't look like much until you start shucking them!
Isn’t it incredible how optimistic we become when we have a 3 ½ day weekend? 2 parties, 30 ears of corn, 2 pies, 32 jars of jam and 18 jars of salsa later and I’m so exhausted I feel like I might have to take a day to rest from my vacation!!
Any one of those projects really would have been enough, but no, not for me. Friday was my first trip ever to the Alameda Farmer’s market and I guess I felt like I had to make up for lost time by buying a little something from each stand. Five pounds of peaches, apricots and nectarines went into my backpack with my thoughts lingering on that peach salsa recipe I had run into. A salsa needs heat, of course, so Thai bird chilis came from another vendor, and then Asian cilantro from yet another and some lovely Cippolini onions from the next stand (yeah, I know, this is like the salsa a Thai foreign exchange student staying in Atlanta with an Italian-American host family would make). The blueberries were too beautiful to pass up, so they went into the bag too. Then, I saw the strawberries – huge flats of gorgeous, plump, fragrant berries. The price seemed steep so I said I’d think about it. Anticipating the heat of a long market day, the vendor lowered his price a few bucks and gave me one to sample – SOLD! to the girl with the heavy bag!
I teetered back to the car with my double flat of organic berries and incredibly heavy backpack. On the way home I remembered that Safeway had corn at 6 ears for 96 cents, which is a steal. I know it’s not organic, I know it’s not local, but I’d just spent $60 on fruit for dog’s sake and I felt like I needed a bargain. I’m sure you will all forgive my lapse. At least it’s seasonal, right? So I bought 30 ears to shuck, zip and preserve in the freezer for those cold winter months when I’ll relish sunshine-in-a-kernel. Freezers run more efficiently when they’re full, you know.
This is me "zipping" the corn
I spent hours Friday night shucking corn (my compost pile thanks me for the greens, by the way). Then, I spent hours cutting the little kernels off the cobs. It was all my cramping hands could do to scoop up the wayward kernels and stuff them in my mouth – I managed somehow, though. Luckily, the pooches helped me with those that fell to the floor. Gotta love my little veggie-eaters!
After cutting the kernels off the corn, I rinsed them and spread them flat on a cookie sheet – well, actually two cookies sheets, a Tupperware lid, a grill tray, and a plate – three times over the span of a couple of a couple of days to freeze them into separate pieces. Then I vacuum sealed them (with the amazing Food Saver Jared got me for Christmas) into four-serving bags and stuck them back into the freezer. It was a lot of work and it reminded me that I HAVE to carry a corn-zipper in my store to reduce hand-crampage from holding the knife but it will all be worth it in the end!
The final product!