Sweet Corn Days

Today has been one of those hot Missouri summer days when any outdoor activity, even walking through the woods, makes your body pour sweat out of every pore. Days like this, when I was a kid, we were up at six to work in the garden, bringing in the produce. Then, when it got hot, Grandma Sander would come out and help us cook, can and freeze. Tomatoes. Green beans. And of course, sweet corn.


We’d sit outside with blankets over the big galvanized tubs, shucking, cleaning, gouging out the wormy spots, saving the good ears for eating whole, and cutting the kernels off the cob for freezing. It was gossip time–and munch time. I never could resist eating little wafers of corn, four or five rows wide and perhaps the length of a domino. Delicious! Just something about those rows of raw corn still stuck together, but off the cob–cool on the tongue on a hot day, smooth and bumpy on one side, sweet, wet and rough on the other.


Tonight we ate sweet corn from the farmer’s market. I had to cut Alex’s off the cob for him. Being three years old and a city boy, he doesn’t want anything to do with corn dominoes. He wants his vegetables broken apart like real corn–you know, the kind from the freezer. So I relieved him of the burden. Tough job, but these are the sacrifices we make as mothers.