Sweetcorn – The Taste of Summer

25 Jul 2010

Category: In Season

It is now the turn of the sweetcorn to take the limelight as one of summer’s seasonal delights. Sweetcorn could be said to represent the taste of summer, nothing beats a corn on the cob smothered in melted butter and speckled with freshly milled black pepper. There is no other food that regularly leaves us with a burnt mouth because we can't wait for it to reach a reasonable temperature before we are unable to resist the urge to tuck in.

Despite many peoples beliefs that sweetcorn has little nutritional value it is in fact very good for you (depending on how much butter you smother it in!) and promoted in the governments 5 a day initiative. It is rich in Carbohydrates and Sugars and contains useful amounts of vitamins A, B3 and C it also contains Folic Acid, Fibre and Protein. Perhaps the most surprising is that unlike most other vegetables it offers even greater health benefits when cooked, the sweetcorn's antioxidant activity is significantly increased when cooked, with research showing it can help to battle cancer, heart disease and protect against cataracts.

Sweetcorn gathered popularity in the UK after World War II and is now grown extensively across southern England including on the Island. AE Brown Farms grows approximately 350 acres of various varieties in and around the Arreton Valley picking from late July through to mid October. The annual Sweetcorn Fayre takes place at Arreton Old Village at the end of September celebrating this delicious vegetable.  

Fresh cobs are available from Farmer Jacks Farm Shop throughout the season, picked daily from within a mile radius of the farm shop. 

Whether you simply boil your corn on the cob for around 5 minutes, barbecue it still in the husk for about 20 minutes or drizzle it with oil and lightly grill, the fresher the sweetcorn the better it tastes.

Sweetcorn Facts:

  • Sweetcorn has plenty of vitamins, carbohydrates and sugars to help you grow, stay healthy, and perform well. 

  • People have been eating sweetcorn for over 7000 years 

  • Columbus brought sweetcorn to Europe from the U.S, or the New World as it was known then. 

  • Corn syrup is used to sweeten soft drinks 

  • Corn is used in glues, toothpaste and shoe polish! 

  •  It's used in fuel and may play an even bigger part in the future. Already 550 million bushels of corn make 1.3 billion gallons of ethanol for fuel.