FRESH baby corn.
I'd never seen it in a local grocery store before, but the Stop & Shop that I go to (Route 2 in Warwick, in case you're keeping track or stalking) is in the middle of a big reorganization/reconstruction project, and it seems like they're also increasing the variety of produce and products they carry. So a few weeks ago I was wandering around in the produce dept, heading for the avocados, and there they were. Fresh baby corn. Fresh. As in, not in a can. Actually they had a whole section of baby vegetables. Baby zucchini. Baby string beans. And so on. But none of that interested me – just the baby corn.
I bought some, and Bill used it in a spicy Thai-inspired noodle dish that he made with some frozen cubes of red curry paste he made at the end of last summer. He used tofu, maybe red bell pepper (I can't remember) and the baby corn, along with the noodles and the red curry paste and coconut milk and who knows what else. Kafir lime leaves. Cilantro. And sliced cucumber all around the edges. I should have taken a picture – it looked beautiful – but I didn't. So he'll have to make it again.
But the thing I'm getting at is that in this very spicy and multi-flavored dish, you could TASTE the corn-ness of these baby corn. They didn't taste like canned baby corn – that is to say, they didn't taste like CAN. No, they – oddly enough – tasted like what they were. Like corn. Fancy that!
So of course, I bought some again the next week. How good would it be if I just steamed the baby corn and melted a little butter on them and sprinkled them with salt and pepper? Summer in March! So that's what I did, and you know what? THEY TASTED LIKE CORN!
I realize this post may give you the idea that I don't have enough excitement in my life, if I'm turning cartwheels about corn, but I just like food to taste like what it IS, and so while we've used canned baby corn in the past, it's just been because the recipe called for it and canned was the only way we could get it.
And so – yeah – this IS exciting. Fresh baby corn. That tastes like what it is. YAY!
Gorgeous, isn't it?