Corn Fed
July 5, 2006

As has been my wont during this corny time of year, I fire up the oven to a blistering 525° degrees and roast my ears to a smokey perfection and sit down to enjoy some of the sweetest bounty summer has to offer. Unfortunately not three minutes into the Nero Wolfe process, my fedging smoke alarm started screaming at me. I opened the oven and discovered that a previous reheating of a few pieces of an overly-cheesed Chez Panisse pizza left a few undesirable remnants behind. Before I could deal with them appropriately, the alarm started in on me again. I flapped it into silence with my jean jacket and went back to the oven and carefully tonged out the charred pieces of crap. Alarm still being a huge tattletale.

More flapping.

And more.

And more.

So, it became painfully apparent that even though I had removed the offending objects, the alarm wasn't even close to shutting its piehole. I sadly turned off the oven and angrily slammed my pasta pot onto the stove. I was going to have my first Brentwood corn of the season, by gum! The fates weren't done with me, though. The water filling the pasta pot was brown. BROWN! And then the alarm went off.

It took another ten minutes of sweat-slicked flapping to shut the smoke alarm totally up, but finally it put a sock in it and the corn was steaming in non-brown water and I was happy. For the moment. After the corn finished its sauna, I slicked it with so much sumptuous Isigny-Ste-Mère butter (Normandy butter by way of the Andronico's dairy shelf) that I needed to Stridex my chin afterwards, and started snapping beauty shots in the middle of which MY CAMERA BATTERY GAVE OUT! Man, I never worked so hard for an ear of corn.

As much as I revere roasting corn (well, roasting most vegetables, actually), I forgot how great steamed corn can be. The kernels retain that deliciously firm pop-snap that roasting and grilling tends to soften. After all the smoke, noise, and panting, I can say with confidence that the end result was totally worth it.

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