Tuesday, July 21

Corn Stock

I just finished canning Whole Kernel Corn and have dozens of corn cobs left.  I am a recycler and savager and hate to waste anything if the item can be used again or re-purposed.  I feed all our leftover food scraps to our livestock so nothing goes to waste from cooking. 

Years ago I started picking up a few of the Martha Stewart books on cooking and entertaining, for cheap at yard sales and second-hand stores.   In one of her books or magazines (I don’t remember which) she had a recipe for corn stock. And I must tell you, I was skeptical.  I am not a huge fan of corn on the cob (I know, weird right?) so was not really excited about doing more with corn.

But with a little thought, I realized corn stock can be used as I would Chicken Stock, to flavor soups, stews, sauces, risotto, casseroles and many other dishes. We love hot soup on cold winter days, and I found homemade stock is really great added to my homemade Vegetable Soup or Sausage Corn Chowder.

Looking in the Ball Blue book, there are recipes for vegetable, beef, and chicken stock, but no mention of corn stock.  I decided to follow the cooking times for vegetable stock which is a little longer processing time,  just to be safe.

Corn is a low acid food so corn stock must be pressure canned to avoid food poisoning or botulism.

Garden fresh corn on the cob

Variations:
There are many recipes for corn stock; some just with the cobs and water, some recipes add spices and vegetables like carrots, celery, and onions. 
I prefer adding a few fresh spices and an onion. If you do not have fresh spices readily available just use store brands and boil the cobs in water!  It’s good either way. 

Corn Stock

Ingredients
12 to 14 corn cobs
4 quarts of water
1 tablespoon parsley
1 tablespoon thyme
2 cloves garlic, finely diced (optional)
2-3 dried bay leaves
1 medium onion, peeled and diced


Place cobs in a stock pot with water

Directions

When stock is done, prepare pressure canner to manufacture’s instructions.
Wash and sterilize canning jars and keep hot. 
I keep my jars right in the canner to keep them hot.  Saves energy and no extra pot to clean.

Add spices, onion or other vegetables, if desired

To Make Stock
Add corn cobs to a large stock put. I usually break the corn cobs in half, but it is not necessary.  Pour water into the pot and then add the parsley, thyme, garlic, bay leaf and onion. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat to low and let the broth simmer for 30 to 60 minutes.

Pour the broth through a fine-mesh sieve to strain. A pot lined with cheesecloth works well too or use a mini strainer and strain as you fill each jar.

Pour hot stock into hot jars, leaving a 1 inch headspace

Working with one jar at a time, ladle hot corn stock into hot jars, leaving a 1 inch headspace.  Wipe jar rim.  Attach 2 piece lids, tightening just until finger tip tight. Place jar on the rack in the pressure canner.  
Wipe jar rim and attach lids

Process at 10 pounds of pressure for 30 minutes for pints and 35 minutes for quarts.  Turn off heat and allow canner to come to 0 pressure or the safety lock releases, depending on your type of pressure canner.  Remove jars from canner and allow to cool 12 to 24 hours without disturbing.  Check lids for seal.
Once cooled, lid should not flex up and down when center is pressed.
Do Not Tighten Bands.  
According to the newest Ball Blue Book, bands may be left on or removed for storage.

Wash off the out side of the jars, label and store in a cool dark location.
Any jars that did not seal can be stored in an air tight container in the refrigerator for up to 1 week, or frozen in freezer containers or bags for months.

Allow to cool undisturbed for 12 to 24 hours before checking lids for seal

Other Storage:
This recipe can be cut in half for smaller potions to store in the refrigerator or freezer.
If you do not have a pressure canner, corn stock can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 1 week, or frozen in freezer containers or bags for months.

PRINT RECIPE 

Once cool, wash the outside of the jars, label and store in a cool dark area
I recently read that this year we are having the wettest summer in Ohio since weather recording began!  I have very few tomatoes coming in and only 4 peppers so far.  
And, I’m afraid to check my potatoes, as I’m sure they’re rotting in the ground.  Some years are not as productive as others, just a fact and all part of the cycle of life.

Elizabeth



Into each life some rain must fall.


~ Henry Wadsworth Longfellow



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