Corn! Corn! Corn!

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We all know nothing is yummier than corn on the cob with a little butter and salt, but there are lots of other healthy ways to enjoy this season’s harvest!! Corn is fresh from the field right now and in abundance at your local farmers markets. Is corn healthy? One cup of fresh sweet corn kernels (about 1 large ear) has 4 grams of fiber, plus it’s rich in lutein and zeaxanthin, compounds that help keep your eyes healthy as you age. Give some of these healthy, easy corn recipes a try and enjoy!

Spicy Grilled Corn Salad with Black Beans

Ingredients

  • 3 ears fresh corn, husked
  • 1 medium red onion, cut into disks about ⅓ inch thick
  • 1 large red bell pepper
  • ½ cup olive oil
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 small canned chipotle, seeded and minced, plus 1 tablespoon adobo sauce (from a can of chipotles in adobo)
  • 2 tablespoons cider vinegar
  • One 15.5-ounce can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 5 ounces queso fresco or feta, crumbled (1 cup)
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh oregano

Directions

  1. Prepare a medium charcoal or gas grill fire. Put the corn, onion, and pepper on a large rimmed baking sheet and brush with 2 tablespoons of the oil. Season with 1 teaspoon salt and ½ teaspoon pepper. Grill the corn and onion, flipping occasionally, until beginning to brown (the onions should still be a little crunchy), 6 to 10 minutes. Transfer to a cutting board to cool slightly. Grill the pepper until charred on all sides, about 12 minutes. Put the pepper in a bowl, cover, and cool slightly.
  2. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, whisk the remaining 6 tablespoons oil, the chipotle and the adobo sauce, vinegar, 1 teaspoon salt, and ½ teaspoon pepper.
  3. Coarsely chop the onion and put it in a large bowl. Cut the corn from the cobs and add to the bowl. Skin, seed, and coarsely chop the pepper; add to the bowl, along with the beans, cheese, cilantro, and oregano.
  4. Rewhisk the dressing, add it to the corn mixture, and toss well. Season to taste with salt and pepper. (The salad may be made up to 1 day ahead. Refrigerate and return to room temperature, adding the fresh herbs just before serving.)

Serves 4. Each serving contains: 240 calories, 16 g fat, 7 g protein, 20 g carbohydrates, 420 mg sodium, 5 mg cholesterol, 4 g fiber.

Corn with Bacon and Mushrooms

Ingredients

  • 2 slices bacon
  • ½ cup thinly sliced shallots
  • 3 cups sliced mixed mushrooms, such as oyster, shiitake and / or baby Bella
  • 4 ears corn, kernels cut from cob
  • ¼ cup water
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground pepper

Directions

  1. Cook bacon in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat until crisp, 5 to 7 minutes. Transfer to a cutting board and chop.
  2. Discard all but 1 tablespoon of the bacon fat from the pan. Add shallots and cook, stirring, until softened, about 2 minutes. Add mushrooms and cook, stirring, until they begin to release their juices, about 3 minutes more. Add corn kernels and water and cook until the corn is tender-crisp, about 5 minutes. Remove from the heat; stir in chopped bacon and season with salt and pepper.

Serves 6. Each serving contains: 9 calories, 2 g fat, 19 g carbohydrates, 4 g protein, 3 g fiber, 162 mg sodium.

Summer Corn Chowder with Bacon and Potatoes

Ingredients

  • 5 ears fresh corn
  • 7 ounces scallions (about 20 medium)
  • 3 slices bacon, cut into ½-inch pieces
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1 jalapeño, cored, seeded, and finely diced
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt; more to taste
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 3½ cups low-salt chicken broth
  • 1 large Yukon Gold potato (8 to 9 ounces), peeled and cut into ½-inch dice (about 1½ cups)
  • 1½ teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
  • 2 tablespoon heavy cream

Directions

  1. Husk the corn and cut off the kernels. Reserve two of the corn cobs and discard the others. Trim and thinly slice the scallions, keeping the dark-green parts separate from the white and light-green parts.
  2. Cook the bacon in a 3- or 4-quart saucepan over medium heat until browned and crisp, about 5 minutes. With a slotted spoon, transfer the bacon to a paper-towel-lined plate. Pour off and discard all but about 1 tablespoon of the bacon fat. Return the pan to medium heat and add the butter. When the butter is melted, add the white and light-green scallions and the jalapeño, salt, and a few grinds of black pepper. Cook, stirring, until the scallions are very soft, about 3 min.
  3. Add the broth, corn, corn cobs, potatoes, and thyme and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat to medium low and simmer until the potatoes are completely tender, about 15 minutes. Discard the corn cobs.
  4. Transfer 1 cup of the broth and vegetables to a blender and puree. Return the puree to the pot and stir in the cream and all but ⅓ cup of the scallion greens. Simmer, stirring occasionally, for a couple of minutes to wilt the scallions and blend the flavors. Season to taste with salt and pepper and serve sprinkled with the bacon and reserved scallions.

Serves 6. Each serving contains: 80 calories, 7 g fat, 8 g protein, 25 g carbohydrates, 320 mg sodium, 15 mg cholesterol, 3 g fiber.

Cheesy Roasted Corn Dip

Ingredients

  • 3 cups corn kernels
  • 8 ounces shredded sharp Cheddar cheese (2 cups)
  • 8 ounces reduced-fat cream cheese (Neufchâtel), cut into small pieces
  • ⅛ teaspoon cayenne or chili powder

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 375°F.
  2. Coat a medium (10-inch) cast-iron skillet with cooking spray; heat over medium-high heat. Add corn; cook, stirring occasionally, until mostly golden brown, 5 to 7 minutes. (Corn kernels may “pop” as they brown.) Remove from heat; stir in Cheddar and cream cheese. Transfer to the oven.
  3. Bake until golden and bubbling, 18 to 20 minutes. Sprinkle the cheese dip with cayenne (or chili powder) and serve.

Each ¼-cup serving: 155 calories, 11 g fat, 34 mg cholesterol, 8 g carbohydrates, 8 g protein, 1 g fiber, 186 mg sodium, 146 mg potassium.