An Ode to the Season’s Last Corn
When I was growing up, corn always signified summer. Even though my family did not always eat an entirely seasonal diet, we saved corn for summer, knowing that’s when it would be the sweetest and the juiciest. During my time farming, my understanding of summer sweet corn has deepened as I learned the ins and outs of the crop. When I arrived in Washington in June, I remember walking through the fields and being excited to find the corn growing ankle high and feeling proud that I could identify its early leaves. As the summer progressed, the days got longer, the sun got hotter, and the corn grew taller. I made sure to check in on it every few weeks and note the changes, watching the ears emerge and become more defined.
During this time I started to crave corn more and more but made sure to hold out until our crop was ready. As a grill-less individual, I began to make deals with my grill-having coworkers, scheming to somehow gain access to this entity, knowing that grilled corn was the way I preferred to celebrate the crop coming on. Finally the day came and a few crew members and I strapped harvest backpacks on and pushed our way in between the rows. As we filled our packs, we were lucky enough to find a few slightly damaged cobs and promptly shucked them and took big, sweet bites of the raw fruit. The corn was so sweet that it was the most delicious in its simplest form. I’ve been thrilled to spend the past few weeks making lots of corn-focused dishes, from roasted corn salad on tacos to grilled corn with a chipotle lime drizzle.
As we pick our last ears of corn this week for your CSAs, I feel supported in my claim that there are still a few days of summer left on the peninsula, even though my coworkers have been convinced it’s been fall for weeks now. I hope you can see what I mean by enjoying a few last bites of summer with me in this week’s CSA and trying out those last few corn-related recipes that you’ve been thinking about!