Corn gets a bad rap these days, probably for its role in many processed foods and the fact that its sugar content is relatively high compared with other vegetables. But hey, don’t let the fact that it isn’t kale put you off.
Corn is actually still pretty good for you, which can’t be said for most things this delicious. It is rich in vitamins and minerals, including vitamins B1 and C, iron, fibre, potassium, and folic acid, as well as multiple antioxidants. All in all, that makes it great for keeping your blood, immune and digestive systems in healthy working order.
Sure, the sugar content of sweetcorn – the most commonly available type of corn – is higher than other vegetables, as the name surely suggests, but it’s still lower than pretty much any other food you can mention.
In fact, corn kernels (the most commonly eaten part) are the seed-bearing parts of a flowering plant, which makes them not technically a vegetable at all, but a fruit. And compared to other fruits, corn’s sugar content is actually very low.
So here we’ll be celebrating corn in its purest form by showing you how to make smooth corn purée at home the easy way. It’s so good both babies and adults will lap it up.
That isn’t even a joke. This recipe makes for excellent baby food, but it works just as well as an easy side dish for more ambitious dinners or adding a fancy 'chef’s smear' when plating up.
You can use canned or frozen sweetcorn for this recipe if it’s more convenient, but we recommend using fresh corn on the cob, which packs a lot more flavour. The perfect cob will have bright green husks and any visible silks (the fibres that protrude from between the kernels) should be pale and thin. The corn kernels will be vibrant and plump. If they’re dry, shrivelled, or indented, you’re probably better off using canned or frozen corn.
Smooth corn purée recipe: steps and ingredients
This easy corn purée recipe should take about 15 minutes to prepare 6 servings.
Note that we steam the corn here, but you can also experiment with boiling, roasting or grilling the corn depending on your desired flavour profile and the equipment you have available.
3 cobs of fresh sweetcorn, or 250g of canned (drained weight) or frozen (defrosted) sweetcorn.
(If using canned or frozen sweetcorn, start from step 5.)
Remove the husk of the corn and any silks.
Steam the corn cobs until the kernels are tender. This should take about 5 or 6 minutes from once your preferred steaming method reaches peak steam.
Remove the corn cobs from the heat and, using tongs, transfer them to a bowl of cold water.
Once the cobs are cool enough to handle, strip the kernels off. The best way to do this is by standing the cob upright over a bowl, then gently running a sharp knife under the kernels, downwards in a sawing motion.
Transfer the corn kernels into a food processor and blend until they won’t get any smoother. You can also add milk or cream at this point if desired.
The purée will still be a little rough and fibrous at this point, which you may prefer. Otherwise, strain it through a sieve to make it nice and smooth.
Refrigerate this corn purée for up to a day in an airtight container, or freeze for up to 2 months.
It’s a rich and creamy comfort food that’s perfectly served with thick slices of crusty bread for dunking. Just the tonic for chilly winter evenings at home alone, but also wouldn’t be out of place as a colourful starter for dinner parties with friends. It’s a brilliant vegetarian option but also tastes great with chunks of salmon stirred in.
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