Tuesday, July 14, 2009

A Little Surprise

One of the "games" that I like to play is to go the the huge produce store down the street and pick up something off the sale shelves to make for dinner that night. Sometimes they will have 6 mangos for $1.00 or this week it was 2 whole pineapples for $.99. In my experience it is usually fruits or veggies that are of excellent quality, just pushing the edge of too ripe. I actually made a sauce using the pineapples and one mango (yes a total cost of $1.19 for sauce, garnish and side dish) but that isn't what I want to talk about today.

While I was picking over the produce rack I saw "Sweet Corn" in a bin next to it. Kris and I love fresh sweet corn so it sounded good and as I was planning to cook out that night it would be an easy addition. I consider myself to be pretty good at spotting good fresh fruits and vegetables. I won't get tomatoes that aren't firm or have any blemishes on them. Melons are firm and have that sweet smell to them or I won't take them home with me.

This corn looked great, the husks were green and soft the silk seemed fresh it hadn't started to get dark I peeled the husk back a little (I am always careful not to rip them open in case I don't want an ear they won't dry out) and the kernels looked juicy with a bright yellow color. It looked like really good corn. I took it home and started the grill while that was heating up I prepared the corn for grilling. I shucked it and let it sit in ice water for a few minutes then wrapped them in foil with a little bit of butter (and some roasted peppers and garlic on mine) and put them on a cooler spot on the grill, except for mine I like to caramelize it a little. Some people prefer to soak the corn in water for twenty minutes to half an hour and grill them with the husks on, I usually don't. I don't mind the smokey flavor that can give, but some people don't like it and the foil tends to give me a little more freedom to do several other things while I am making dinner.

About 15 minutes later I took them off and set them on a plate to serve. Little bits of steam were rising from the shiny bright yellow kernels, they looked beautiful... However they tasted AWFUL! bleh. Sawdust could have tasted better. The kernels were juicy but the texture off, the meat was chewy and had the flavor of wet cardboard. I guess I am saying that we all have the disasters in the kitchen sometimes, this time I have the luxury of saying that it was bad corn, I have made this particular item somewhere around 100 times in my life so I can safely say that the method is sound. However I have burned rice, main dishes and myself several times or dropped glass casserole on the way to the table. The disasters happen and if you handle them right they can be a fun story to tell over dinner or maybe a couple of weeks down the road.

Since I like the pictures with my posts I am including one of this dish the last time I made when it turned out well. I am wondering if this was from the same batch of corn that someone left in the back room.

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