Jul 292015

Macho Guy returned home wide-eyed with excitement from golf the other day. He was so ecstatic, I thought he was about to tell me that he made a hole in one. Nope. It was something far more important and life altering.

While driving in to the course, one of MG’s golfing buddies saw a sign outside Reese Farms, the growers of the best “peaches and cream” sweet corn in the area. Nearly drooling, all aglow with barely controlled glee, MG announced that the sweet corn is in! The roadside stand is open for business! We have to drive over there now, now, now, before they sell out!

Reese Farms

I’m surprised he played golf and came home first instead of going straight to Reese Farms. MG is a man of the Midwest, Iowa to be precise. In Iowa, freshly picked corn on the cob is the acknowledged food of the gods. During corn season, bacon and ham run a distant second and third at best. The hogs are thrilled about this.

MG usually chows down three or four ears of corn to my one. I once observed him devour a half dozen. He inhales corn on the cob in much the same way I put away pasta, and this descendent of Sicilian peasants can seriously put away the pasta.

We peeled out of the driveway in our old Mustang convertible and zoomed down the scenic back roads to Reese Farms. MG was intent on getting there as fast as possible even if it meant exceeding the posted speed limit, which he did of course. I was intent on watching for Sheriff’s Deputies on patrol.

We arrived at Reese Farms to discover automobiles lined up in the parking area waiting for a space. MG panicked momentarily, fearing there would be no corn left for him, but when he noticed the sacks of corn piled high on the roadside stand’s counter, he breathed a sigh of relief.

The driver of the car behind us honked his horn at us. That riled MG because we were stuck in line and couldn’t move, but then he recognized the driver as one of his golf buddies. Another golf buddy was in line behind the first. The three converged and performed a ritual homage to the corn god, or maybe they just shook hands and patted each other on the back. I’m not sure. The three came away from the stand, eyes burning with corn lust, holding a sack of corn in each hand.

I wondered how we would manage to eat two-dozen ears of corn before they began to age and turn woody. As it turned out, there were 18 ears in each sack. That really had me worried, but my concern was unnecessary. In his buoyant mood, MG grabbed an extra sack so we might share our bounty with our neighbor. What a guy!

Back home again, MG lost no time in shucking six ears while I set the pot of water on to boil. [I cheat, by the way. I add sugar to the water so the corn is sweet no matter what.]

Since the corn on the cob would be the main course, the “go with” was inconsequential. In the interest of speed, I slapped together a couple of BLT sandwiches, put out pickles and olives, a shaker of salt, a stick of butter, a basting brush to slather butter on the corn, and corn holders to spare our fingertips from the piping hot corn cobs.


We got down to the business of making short work of dinner, especially the sweet corn. I made certain that my hands never got between MG and the corn platter. [I needed them in working order to be able to write this post.] I must confess that our table manners were atrocious. Both of us ate with our elbows propped on the table—unapologetically—while we gnawed on the corncobs.

It would have been so generous and understanding of Emily Post to grant an exemption to that elbows off the table rule of etiquette when eating corn on the cob. Maybe she might have if she had been born in Iowa instead of Baltimore, Maryland.

Fortunately, Schnoodle Dog was the only witness to our disgraceful exhibition—which we repeated shamelessly two nights in a row. Unlike Duke, the Bush’s Baked Beans dog in the commercials, Schnoodle Dog does not tell tales or give away family secrets. You have to love a dog that goes the extra mile to protect the reputations of his pet people. #sweetcorn #cornonthecob #Iowa #etiquette #EmilyPost

  10 Responses to “Corny As Can Be”

  1. Hubs hit the Farmers’ Market on Saturday and brought home corn. I grew up like your MG with having corn as the main course. Great post.

    • Thanks, Diane. After years of eating supermarket corn when I lived in The Big Apple, I was amazed at how much better fresh corn tasted–especially when we visited MG’s family and had corn fresh out of his Mom’s garden. Yum!

  2. Fresh corn is a gift from the Gods. I love this time of year when the produce is fresh and homegrown. I like to pick up some corn and have just that for dinner. It’s the perfect summer meal. Add homegrown, fresh off the vine tomatoes and I’m in heaven. I didn’t know the trick about adding sugar. I’ll have to try it.

    • Corn on the cob and fresh tomatoes are scrumptious, Melissa. The tomatoes in our garden are just beginning to ripen. I love to make caprese salad with them. Sometimes, as a side dish, I slice tomatoes, salt and pepper them, sprinkle fresh oregano leaves on them, and then drizzle extra virgin olive oil over the slices. One of my favorite guilty pleasures is a simple sliced tomato sandwich made with fresh, just out of the garden tomatoes. Yummy.

  3. Yep that first taste of Michigan sweet corn ranks right up there with the first vine-ripened tomato. I picked my first ones this week, and now the rest will all ripen while I’m on vacation. My pet-sitter friend will get to enjoy them, but I’m hoping a few will still be waiting for me when we get home. We’ll be passing through Iowa on our way west, so maybe I’ll get some home-grown corn there!

    • I hope you score some Iowa corn on your westward trek, Lucy. Iowa corn is awesome. I know how you feel about missing out on those homegrown tomatoes when you go on vacation. The same thing happened to us several years in a row. We did all the work and our neighbors enjoyed the tomatoes. ::sigh::

  4. Of course, sweet corn (especially the peaches and cream variety) is a main course! I usually eat three ears to my hubby’s one. This is not the time of year to diet – or worry about table manners.

  5. We’re the same way with corn and tomatoes. This is the best time of year, food wise, ever. Gotta love those furry friends who have the courtesy to keep those lips of theirs sealed!

    • The way I see it, Margo, all the fresh veggies from our gardens at this time of year spoils us for the rest of the year when we have to rely on store bought produce. We just have to enjoy every bit of the fresh stuff for as long as we can.

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