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Oven Roasted Corn on the Cob with Flavored Butters

The Olmec and Mayans cultivated it in numerous varieties throughout Mesoamerica, cooked, ground or processed through nixtamalization. Beginning about 2500 BC, the crop spread through much of the Americas.

The region developed a trade network based on surplus and varieties of maize crops. After European contact with the Americas in the late 15 th and early 16 th centuries, explorers and traders carried maize back to Europe and introduced it to other countries. Maize spread to the rest of the world because of its ability to grow in diverse climates. Sugar-rich varieties called sweet corn are usually grown for human consumption, while field corn varieties are used for animal feed and as chemical feedstocks.

Maize is the most widely grown grain crop throughout the Americas, with 332 million metric tons grown annually in the United States alone. Approximately 40% of the crop — 130 million tons — is used for corn ethanol. Genetically modified maize made up 85% of the maize planted in the United States in 2009.

Health Benefits of Corn
Corn, one of the most popular and versatile vegetables, is also a good source of several nutrients. Corn is a low-fat complex carbohydrate that deserves a regular place on any healthy table. These high-fiber, fat-fighting kernels of goodness are also hearty and satisfying.

This popular food is high in fiber. In fact, it’s notoriously hard to digest. But its insoluble fiber is tops at tackling common digestive ailments.

Corn is a surprising source of several vitamins, including folic acid, niacin, and vitamin C. The folic acid in corn is now known to be an important factor in preventing neural-tube birth defects. It’s just as important in preventing heart disease, according to studies that show folic acid can prevent a buildup of homocysteine, an amino acid, in the body. Long-term elevation of homocysteine has been linked to higher rates of heart disease; folic acid helps break it down.

oven roasted corn with Flavored Butters

 

Oven Roasted Corn on the Cob with Flavored Butters

INGREDIENTS:

8 ears fresh corn in the husks

BBQ BUTTER:

  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • 1/2 small chopped onion
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 2 teaspoons paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne powder
  • 1 teaspoon toasted cumin seeds
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, slightly softened
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

HERB BUTTER:

  • 2 sticks unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh herbs (basil, chives or cilantro)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper

LIME BUTTER:

  • 2 sticks unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 small fresh lime
  • 3 tablespoons fresh cilantro
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  2. Place corn in husks directly on the oven rack
  3. Roast for 40 minutes, or until kernels are tender.
  4. When corn is ready, remove from oven, let cool slightly, and peel down the husks to use as handles for eating.

While the corn is cooking, make any or all of these flavored butters:

For BBQ BUTTER

  1. Heat the oil in a medium saute pan over high heat.
  2. Add the onion and cook until soft, 2 to 3 minutes.
  3. Add the garlic and cook for about a minute.
  4. Add the paprika, cayenne, cumin and chile powder. Cook for 1 minute.
  5. Add 1/2 cup of water and cook until the mixture becomes thickened. Let cool slightly.
  6. Add the butter to the spice mixture and Worcestershire sauce, and blend until smooth.
  7. Season with salt and pepper.
  8. Put the mixture into a bowl, cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
  9. Bring to room temperature before serving.

For the HERB BUTTER

  1. Mix above-mentioned HERB BUTTER ingredients until smooth.
  2. Refrigerate for 30 minutes
  3. Bring to room temperature before serving.

For the LIME BUTTER

  1. Mix above-mentioned LIME BUTTER ingredients until smooth.
  2. Refrigerate for 30 minutes
  3. Bring to room temperature before serving.

Sprinkle with freshly grated Parmesan cheese optional

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