I know, I know. Everyone knows how to microwave sweet corn. That’s nothing new. But, this method was new to me—cooking the corn with the husks and silk intact! It works like a charm, it’s unbelievably simple and most importantly, it is absolutely delicious. I think leaving the husks and silk intact during cooking, protects the corn and adds some flavor. It could be my imagination, but I don’t think so. At the very least, it’s never soggy. The Goddess doesn’t like soggy, unless it’s Grape-nuts®. She loves soggy cereal. Who knows what evils lurk in her lurid taste buds? Anyway, back to the corn. I can’t remember where I read about this method, but let me assure you, it works. And it works well. My concern was that the silk wouldn’t come off clean. My fears were completely unfounded. The silk comes right off. The only drawback, if there is one, is that this is really only cooking for one or two people—no more than four or five ears. This is how it works. First, you carefully break off the “stem” at the base of the corn. This is the part that attaches the ear to the stalk. Hold the ear in one hand and grab the stem-end with your other hand. Now just break it off, by bending it downward. If there are some errant “tails” on the top of the ear, I just break them off, but I leave the silk intact. Second, lay the ears flat on the microwave turntable. Is that what you call the plate part that turns? Anyway, on occasion I have laid an extra ear diagonally across the other ears and it worked okay. Now, the tricky part of this technique is the cooking time. There are several things to consider…the time it takes to cook the ear(s) will depend on the size and temperature of the corn. If it’s straight out of the fridge, I add two minutes to the total time. The other thing is the size of your microwave; mine is 1200 watts. Also, my microwave has a sensor setting. How this works, I have no idea. Perhaps the microwave becomes one with the corn or there are magical faeries that fly in and wave their wands or kitchen gnomes. Whatever does it, it works. Just in case you don’t have that feature, this is what I have found. Cook on HIGH for:
- 1 ear of corn —— cook for 3-4 minutes
- 2 ears of corn —— cook for 5-6 minutes
- 3 ears of corn —— cook for 7 minutes
- 4 ears of corn —— cook for 8 minutes
- 5 ears of corn —— cook for 8 minutes
When I cook more than 2 ears, I usually turn them half-way through the cooking process. Otherwise, you can have some under-cooked areas. All microwaves have hot spots. Also, I like the corn to still be crisp. It’s definitely cooked, but it will “pop” when you bite into the ear.
Remove the ears from the microwave. You might need to use a holder of a thick kitchen towel. They are HOT! My hands are like leather, so I don’t usually need to do that, but be safe rather than sorry. I think the corn is better when you let the ears sit for two or three minutes before you peel off the husks and silk.
Finally, after the corn has taken its little siesta, using a very sharp knife, cut the stem-end of the ear off; I cut off about 1/4-inch. Now, simply peel the top back, grabbing both the silk and the husks together. See. They come right off. Look at that. It’s not soggy or water-logged. It’s fresh and wonderfully crisp to the bite. YUM! The corn is now ready to serve.
Personally, I don’t care if it has butter or not, but I usually do salt it a bit. Freshly ground black pepper is a must for me. However, having said all that, tonight I drizzle the ears with some lovely Spiced Garlic Butter with Horseradish. This stuff is nutty and just sooooo good. Since I was having some roasted chicken, this butter was a really nice addition.
Oh, yes. If you’re cooking corn for a crowd, I usually steam the corn ahead of time. I leave the ears in their husks with the silk in tact, then put the cooked ears in one of those cheap Styrofoam coolers. The corn will stay hot for at least 30 minutes. Then peel the ears and serve. Now you have options. You can have sweet corn for dinner every night. Now that’s a happy thought, isn’t it?