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Baby Corn

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  • Fresh baby corn has a crisp texture and a subtle, slightly sweet corn flavor.
  • Although almost all the baby corn found in the United States is pickled or
    canned and imported from Asia, fresh baby corn is easy to grow in the Pacific Northwest.
  • Baby corn is no longer a delicacy or specialty food
    reserved for salad bars and Asian restaurants; it is a locally produced delicious
    treat to eat raw or cooked in many recipes.
  • Baby cornís miniature size makes consumers think that it grows from dwarf corn plants, but the tiny ears of baby corn are simply immature ears from regular-sized corn plants.
  • Specialty varieties are available for baby corn production, but baby corn can also be harvested from many common corn varieties.
  • The purpose of this publication is to describe how to select a variety and grow baby corn.
  • There are two different methods for producing baby corn. In the first method, baby corn is the
    primary crop, and a variety is selected and planted to produce only baby corn. In the second method, baby corn is the secondary crop in a planting of sweet corn or field corn, and the variety
    is selected to produce either sweet corn or field corn.
  • The decision whether to grow baby corn either as a primary crop or as a secondary crop will
    influence variety choice, planting density, and fertilizer rates.
  • Baby corn ears are hand-picked as soon as the corn silks emerge from the ear tips, or a few days after. Corn generally matures very quickly, so the harvest of baby corn must be timed carefully to avoid ending up with more mature corn ears. Baby corn ears are typically 4.5 cm to 10 cm (1.75 inches - 4 inches) in length and 7 mm to 17 mm (1/4 inch - 2/3 inch) in diameter.
  • Baby corn adds a special, gourmet touch to many dishes and salads. Its miniature size is appealing, as is the taste, color and crunch.
  • When ready to prepare, remove the husk and wash baby corn before cooking. Most people like to steam baby corn for 5 minutes or until tender before using in other dishes.
  • Baby corn can also be eaten raw; the entire tiny ear of corn is edible, cob and all. Here are some easy ways to start using baby corn.
  •  Serve raw with other vegetables and a low-fat dip. Toss cooked baby corn into your sfavorite pasta salad or tossed salad. Include baby corn in any stir-fry dish. Add baby corn to spaghetti sauce, a rice and bean dish, or casserole. Serve steamed baby corn as a side dish topped with a bit of olive oil or butter and a dash of salt. Include raw baby corn in vegetable soups or stews, adding near the end of cooking time. Marinate baby corn to serve as a vegetable side dish or add to pasta .

 

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