My Vegetable Love —

Summertime —slow, lazy, sultry — has laid its spell on me. No posting, no reading blogs, not doing much of anything except lolling about, reading, and day dreaming. And eating corn on the cob.

Corn on the Cob

In Andrew Marvell’s poem To His Coy Mistress, he urges his lady to get a move on, time’s a-fleeting. Had they but world enough and time, he says, they could flirt and play coy to both their heart’s content. Their vegetable love could grow vaster than empires, he says. Β But there isn’t world enough, nor is there time; and by the time someone is my great age, how well we know the truth of that!

My great love in life (besides The Hub, of course) is a vegetable love. I flip for fresh corn on the cob. All winter and spring and early summer I wait for the corn to grow as high as an elephant’s eye, for the soft tassels to fill out and turn brown, for the farm stands to spring up all along our roads, proffer their vast heaps of corn, the king of all summer crops, especially for me.

Sacks of Corn

You can get into a serious argument in the U.S. about how best to cook fresh corn on the cob. Some swear by steaming, some by grilling. But me, I just bring some water to a boil, dump in the corn, let it boil NO MORE THAN two minutes, pluck it out, slather on the butter, add judicious salt, and that’s it. (Truth to tell, sometimes I nibble raw kernels right from the cob.)

I’ll serve corn on the cob with rotisserie chicken, or the occasional hamburger. With tilapia, maybe. A boiled lobster is very nice. But the corn is the main event for me. I would eat it EVERY SINGLE DAY of the season, if The Hub didn’t periodically revolt. Β I tell him, I wait all year, the season goes so fast, how can I bear to miss out on all those beautiful green ears calling out to me from everywhere? But sometimes he still hardens his heart.

Farmstand

Now I know that no French person is going to pick food up from a plate with bare hands , especially food dripping with butter, and wade into it with unrestrained gusto. German friends don’t especially love to do that either. But The Hub is American-born! Ah well, in marriage one has to make allowances.

As it is, I’ll have fresh corn four times a week or so all summer. Oh, I have a couple of other recipes for it (Corn with Miso Butter and Bacon, Corn with Scallions, Bacon and Greens), but really — they’re gilding the lily, so far as I’m concerned. The pure thing, unadorned, is what I crave.

No Price too High

September begins today, and the countdown to the end of corn season. All too soon it will be back to making do with winter squash and potatoes and cabbage. I like them all, they’re very good friends of mine. But my dearest true love, my romance, will all too soon abandon me, and back I’ll go to wishful dreaming until next July.

Had we but world enough, and time —-Β If I lived in California or in Florida, how much more time could I spend with my vegetable love! But if absence does indeed make the heart grow fonder, perhaps New England’s stern and implacable seasons in fact only strengthen my vegetable love, and make it grow.

Do you have a vegetable love too? If so, tell all!

Advertisements
This entry was posted in Autumn, Etcetera, Food, Happiness, Personal Essay and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

45 Responses to My Vegetable Love —

  1. The pleasure you take in corn is so evident in your passionate writing of it. I am German and we do not eat corn…….ha! As a child we grew 40 acres of it……..but fed it to the animals and ate them! I so enjoyed your post.

    Like

    • Touch2Touch says:

      Sort of eating the corn at one remove? I laughed and laughed!
      But as I am certain you know by now, there is corn and corn. There is sweet corn, and field corn. When it was first introduced in Europe, I think people tasted feed corn, poor things, and promptly fed it to the animals! That corn tastes much better in the form of pork chops! But sweet corn, grown locally, eaten the same day it’s picked, what can I tell you, Emil. Heaven, that’s it.

      Like

  2. coastalcrone says:

    Sweet corn is one of my favorites too and I boil it the same way. My other favorite is okra. Enjoy your corn while it lasts! There is time enough for that.

    Like

  3. I agree fresh sweet corn is among the best vegetables. Then again, any fresh vegetable at the right season would be my favorite… πŸ™‚

    Like

  4. Mary Kates (your copain in french class) says:

    I love sweet corn, too. But 1 is my limit, otherwise I’ll have terrible pains in the stomach. This never happened when I was young and could eat 4, steamed, no butter, too much cholesterol. My son cuts all the tender kernels off with a sharp knife until he has a huge pile of delicious kernels on his plate. I like to cut the kernels off and make corn chowder…delish! binty2

    Like

    • Touch2Touch says:

      Bienvenue, Mary! Lovely to see you here —
      You remind me of two go-to dishes I make, two variants of corn chowder, of course! One pure and simple, the other with a decided Mexican flair. We have to swap recipes in French class!!!!
      PS: I can still manage 2 corns these days, but no more. Same reason.

      Like

  5. i am quite passionate about fresh corn on the cob myself. i am in ‘weekly photo challenge’ mode via my photojourneying blog, so my apologies about any confusing identities, but i am still in a summer zone, and too lazy to sign out and into my photo blog id. however that is where i recently shared about an easy way of cooking fresh corn that my brother told me about. i never knew he could be so practical in the kitchen!
     
    thanks for sharing this mouth-watering post. gotta love corn!

    Like

  6. Corn on the cob, boiled. Butter and salt. With a sliced fresh tomato on the side. Dinner!

    I love simple vegetable dinners: a bowl of roasted brussels sprouts with garlic, a plate of grilled asparagus with sesame oil, roasted sweet potatoes with fenugreek, a summer cruditΓ©s…now I’m hungry…

    Like

    • Touch2Touch says:

      I’m a veggie lover too. The only thing on your list I’m not acquainted with is the taste of fenugreek. The concept, yes, but don’t know what it would taste like. Have you ever tried cinnamon on roasted potatoes? I got that from Melissa Clark, who’s usually too fussy-wussy for me, but they were good.
      Something new for Labor Day?

      Like

  7. Stef says:

    Great pictures! I have many vegetable loves – many of which can be found here: http://savorysundays.wordpress.com/the-table-of-contents/ πŸ™‚

    Like

  8. cocomino says:

    Corn is my family’s favorite Nice post πŸ™‚

    Like

    • Touch2Touch says:

      Maybe you and/or your girls will remember the part in My Neighbor Totoro when little Mei clutches her ear of corn and goes marching off to find her mother —
      I could relate to that! Enjoy the late corn of summer.

      Like

  9. I’m not a LOVER of veggies. Just a LIKER. But corn is at the top. And reading this, well, corn never sounded so good!

    Like

  10. Patti Kuche says:

    What a wonderful summer of contentment for you!! I never think of corn without hearing the song from Oklahoma, “Oh What a Beautiful Morning!” When we were young we ate hot creamed corn, from a tin, on toast with bacon and . . . . I loved it!

    Like

    • Touch2Touch says:

      You know, Patti — corn and bacon is still dynamite. Add some miso butter (mix a little white miso into softened butter, it takes some effort) to cook the corn in, with or without added bacon. It’s decadent!
      (Actually, it’s a little too rich for me, I love more austerely. But you should try it to make a decision.)

      Like

  11. Sonel says:

    Just like you I also LOVE corn and any vegetable! Luckily hubby and the boys love their veggies too and I also boil the corn a few minutes and then it’s buttered and salted. Yummy! πŸ˜€ Great shots! πŸ™‚

    Like

    • Touch2Touch says:

      Tonight I’m trying the Microwave-it-in-its-husk-for-two-minutes school of corn preparation.
      But I plan to do only one that way, unless it’s sensational. The ears I bought today are beauties!
      Hope you’re all enjoying some tonight also!

      Like

      • Sonel says:

        That sounds great as well. Let me know how it turned out so I can try it when I get some again.

        I wish, but I will get some this weekend. πŸ˜€
        *hugs*

        Like

        • Touch2Touch says:

          Where do you live, Sonel? Around here (Pioneer Valley, Western MA) you can’t drive down any road without passing a farm stand or a card table or even a basket with corn for sale!

          Like

          • Sonel says:

            We live in Hartbeespoortdam, South Africa T2T and as it’s a tourist town we have stalls all over but prefer to buy our greens from the farmers. They have their own market and sometimes we just buy it from the grocers. The road stalls are not so clean and well, this is South Africa and you never know what they could put in the veggies. We are careful. πŸ˜€

            Like

          • Touch2Touch says:

            Very interesting, sonel. Some of our local farms sell to local supermarkets in season, which is now. For the moment, we have a choice of those, or actual farmers’ stands, or just local people selling outside their houses, which is safe here. Corn season is perhaps six weeks, if that. The growing season here, in general, is four months. A few things go on a little longer, but we live in a cold climate.
            I envy what seems to be luxuriant fertility in South Africa! But it’s your winter now. What does that mean? How cold? What crops if any are only in summer? (I also envy Californians and Floridians, whose climate is so much more smiling than ours.)
            BTW, thanks as always for your interesting comments!

            Like

          • Sonel says:

            We used to have that too but the people became lazy and are using the locals to sell their products. Luckily the supermarkets have fresh veggies and fruits and we normally buy there as the farmers can be very overpricey sometimes.

            We’re going into Spring now and to be honest, I don’t really know what kind of crops we have now as every province here in SA have different planting seasons as well as crops.

            You are very welcome hon and thanks for a very interesting blog. Love it. πŸ˜€ *hugs*

            Like

          • Touch2Touch says:

            Happy Spring, whatever you’ll be eating soon!
            πŸ™‚

            Like

          • Sonel says:

            hehe, same there hon. Thanks! πŸ˜€ *hugs*

            Like

  12. rebekah says:

    I like corn … but I have to admit I’ve only had corn on the cob once! Everyone around me were so excited about this, and it was good … but it sure made me long for a good tooth brush.

    Don’t think there are any veggies I don’t like, but I guess the trusty potato got to be my favourite . It’s always there, and I grew up where it almost Β«wasn’t food without potatoesΒ». Going out and dig up your own, home grown, potatoes, boil them right away with lots of dill .. eat them with real butter on — divine!

    Like

    • Touch2Touch says:

      Oh, Rebekah! Why did I forget about potatoes? I do love them. But they’re available all year round, so I guess I take them a little bit for granted. I shouldn’t. They’re so versatile, and so delicious in so many ways.
      What you say about “it almost ‘wasn’t food without potatoes'” is certainly true in Ireland. There, no matter what the dish, and no matter that it was often served with fried potatoes, or mashed, or sauteed, there was ALWAYS also a dish of boiled potatoes! Your comment really made me hungry —

      Like

  13. I love corn too but don’t make it as often I wish. Although we get corn throughout the year, we don’t always get good, sweet corn. Your beautiful description has now gotten me thinking I should get my hands on some! Between butter and salt or teriyaki sauce, I can’t decide which is my favorite way to eat corn.

    Like

  14. We don’t find fresh corn on the cob here quite as good as it is back in my home state. My poor children are robbed of the joy gained from eating the corn on the cob dripping with butter. Their braces make it an impossible challenge for the next few summers. Poor kids! 😦

    Like

    • Touch2Touch says:

      But just think — in a couple of years their magnificent straight bites will enable them to be super-efficient when they tackle the delicious yellow stuff!
      (True, the Midwest is unparalleled for great corn on the cob — except by the Pioneer Valley. πŸ™‚

      Like

  15. Madhu says:

    As children we used to bury them in smoldering wood ash – used for heating bath water! – and they would be perfectly cooked through with light brown specks on the surface, in a few minutes! We cooked sweet potatoes the same way. Much nicer and smokier than baking in an electric oven πŸ™‚

    Like

I love comments! Thanks for coming by and visiting ---

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s