One of my favorite things about summer is corn on the cob. I’ve always cooked it in boiling water on the stove, but over the past couple of years I kept reading about grilling corn. I decided to give it a try for myself.
The Internet (where all information is True) differed on whether corn should be presoaked or dry; husks/silks removed in part, in whole or not at all; kernels brushed with oil, butter or not at all. Cooking time (15-20 minutes) and medium-high heat, though, seemed to be about the same among all my sources.
With 6 ears of corn to play with, I decided to soak 3 ears (for 15 minutes completely submerged) and leave 3 ears dry. I pulled off the husks and silks from the very top of the ear (see pics for what I mean) and also removed any loose husks. In my head, this reduced the chance of the silk or husks catching on fire.
I ended up with a cooking time of 20 minutes going for an overall charred look to the corn (I could have been okay with 15, I think) and made sure to turn the corn every 5 minutes or so.
The verdict? Not bad. A little overcooked maybe, but still tasty. The husks and silk came off easily – no need for a corn brush – which may make this my go-to method of cooking corn. Absolutely no silk was stuck to the kernels among the dry ears. That was the only soak vs nonsoak difference so I’ll be skipping the soaking step from here on out.
A couple of caveats for people wanting to grill their own corn dinners.
Caveat 1 – The ears are hot, freakishly hot beneath their outer layers of husks. You don’t realize how hot they are until you start peeling the husk and are committed to holding a steaming hot ear of corn in one bare hand.
Caveat 2 – Many Internet recipes said go by the look of the husks, their overall charred appearance, to determine doneness. I waited the extra 5 minutes so the husks darkened more and wish I hadn’t. Maybe I should have closed the grill from the beginning instead of for the last 10 minutes.
Bonus caveat – the finished corn had an odd odor while in the husks, somewhat of a cross between popcorn (yum) and composting garden waste (not so yum). But the smell didn’t transfer to the kernels and once the ears were husked, it was gone.