Rachel's Table

Corn Off the Cob

Every year, when summer rolls around, my husband and I have the same exact conversation:

Me: Filasky’s has sweet corn!

Mr. Rache: I don’t like it on the cob.

Me: I want to eat six ears of corn for dinner tonight.

Mr. Rache: I don’t like it on the cob.

Me: I’m going to buy three dozen ears, blanch it and freeze it for winter.

Mr. Rache: I don’t like it on the cob.

Me: The Food and Wine Hedonist just posted a Mexican street corn recipe on his blog.  I don’t like mayonnaise, but it looked good. Maybe we should try it.

Mr. Rache: As long as it’s not on the cob.

Me: You know what we should do when we have our barbecue? Grill sweet corn.

Mr. Rache: Corn on the cob gets stuck in my teeth.

Me: That’s what tooth picks are for.

This year the conversation ended a little differently. I relented, spared his teeth, and took the corn off the cob. I’m glad I did, because this was the best corn I’ve eaten all summer–sweet but savory, crisp but smooth, and simply delicious.

The perfect summer side dish

Easy to make and to eat

Corn Off the Cob with Bacon and Jalapeno

8 ears of local sweet corn

2 strips of bacon, diced

1 small sweet onion (or half of a large onion), diced

1 jalapeno, seeds removed and diced

1/4 teaspoon cumin

1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika

Two pinches chipotle powder

Juice of half a lime

Kosher salt

Freshly ground black pepper

Cilantro, for garnish (optional)

Remove the corn kernels from the cob with a knife (make life easier and do this in a bowl).

Corn in a bowl

The bowl is your best friend in this scenario

Heat a medium skillet on medium high heat. Add the bacon and cook until crispy. Remove the bacon to a paper towel and set aside. Add the onion to bacon fat in the skillet and cook until translucent, about 4 minutes.

Add the jalapeno, cumin, smoked paprika and chipotle powder. Stir to combine, getting those spices all toasty. Add the corn. Give it a stir and add a few pinches of salt and some black pepper. Saute until corn is just cooked but still crisp, about 3 minutes. {Cook’s note: A splash of heavy cream and tablespoon of butter at this point would make this dish even more rich. I refrained as I am watching my figure, and it tastes amazing without the extra fat. But if you try it with heavy cream, skip the lime juice.}

Remove corn from heat, add the lime juice, and check for seasoning.  Add more salt if necessary. Transfer to a serving bowl or plates and garnish with the bacon and cilantro. Serves 6 as a side dish.

The Perfect Summer Side Dish

The Perfect Summer Side Dish

So tell me, are you dainty like Mr. Rache and prefer your corn off the cob? Or are you a chomper like me and want it on the cob–the messier the better?


  1. This recipe has Jim written alllll over it. Bacon AND jalapeño?

    Sadly, I’m with Mr. Rache. I will eat corn on the cob if it’s fresh, but I won’t like it. Too messy and gets stuck in my teeth. (sorry, RP, lol)

  2. You had me at (wait for it…) BACON!!!!

    Grilled corn on the cob is one of my summer favorites, although I get where Mr. Rache is coming from. Not the best food if you’re trying to impress someone. Maybe he still feels every meal with you is like a first date.

  3. I second the call for grilled corn on the cob — the slightly smokey flavor kicks it up a notch. I usually go for the best of both worlds. Corn on the cob at dinner, and then I cut off the leftovers to make a corn, tomato, and black bean salad to have for lunch the next day.

    Besides, food isn’t really good unless its messy, right?

    • Oh yeah, I know exactly what you’re talking about. Chewed up corn kernels all over my face and butter down my chin and most likely on my shirt, too. Ah, summer.

  4. Simpatica Rchel, dar portia pe care o expui tu, nu-mi ajunge nici pe o masea,cum se spune!
    Sau este iluzia unui desert? 🙂
    Multumesc, o retin ca pe o solutie de slabit.
    Sper sa nu mor de inanitie?

  5. Love corn on the cob! My husband will eat it either way but doesn’t love it quite as much as I do (which just means more for me). I think Mr. Rache should suck it up or cut it off the cob himself. Lol, and maybe if you start calling him dainty to his face, he might change his tune?

  6. Pingback: Black Bean & Corn Salad | Dishing it out with Clarissa

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  8. No bacon for me. Love it straight off the cob, but only if it’s been JUST DIPPED in boiling water for 30 seconds to a minute. Can’t stand over-cooked kernels, which is the only time the husks stick in my teeth.

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