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Corn

The plant that gives us the vegetable that we know as sweet corn is closely related to the plant that produces for us the grain we know as corn. The rest of the world knows this grain as maize after the latin name for the plant. We are concerned here with corn the vegetable, or sweet corn. Technically, even sweet corn is a grain, not a vegetable. And this is valuable to remember when one is thinking in nutritional terms. Vegetables are reknown for providing prodigeous amounts of vitamins A and C. Corn does not. Vegetables are reknown for having lots of nutrients and few calories. Corn has lots of calories and just a token amount of iron. Nutritionally, corn is a grain.

Corn is a favorite 'vegetable' because at its best it is quite sweet, tender, and flavorful. Its flavor works well with just about anything else. It is especially good with eggs and milk in corn custards. And it is especially good cooked on the cob and served with butter. Kernals of corn can be roasted to a golden color in the oven and cooked into cream of corn soup. Made with a rich chicken broth and with a touch of ancho chili, paprika, and sour cream one has quite a spectacular soup. There are many kinds of soup that incorporate the flavors of chicken and corn, and this is one of the great classic flavor pairs in American home cooking.

Here are some strategies for treating corn effectively in recipes.

Corn is also the source of the fungus known in the US as corn smut and in Mexico as huitlacoche. There it is a highly prized delicacy that fetches much higher prices per ear of corn than does the corn. Huitlacoche is prepared as mushrooms are. My favorite idea for it is to cook it in enchiladas where it is wrapped in corn tortillas; I have the sneaking suspicion that there would be a real harmony here.
Sweet Corn Recipes