The microwave is a corncob’s best friend.
The joys of peak corn season are many (corn fritters, corn salad, and grilled corn on the cob, to name a few). However, there is one undeniably unpleasant facet to cooking with fresh corn: having to remove the cob’s pesky husks and silks.
Luckily, we’ve shucked plenty of corn in the test kitchen over the years, and we’ve devised an easy, failproof way to cleanly rid cobs of their husks and silks: Just microwave them and shake them. Here’s how to do it.
With a sharp chef’s knife, cut off the stalk end of the cob, just above the first row of kernels.
Place 3–4 ears at a time on a microwave-safe plate and microwave on full power for 30–60 seconds (the cob will heat up a bit, but the kernels won’t be cooked).
Hold each ear by its uncut end in one hand. Shake the ear up and down until the cob slips free, leaving behind husk and silk.
Now that your ears of corn are shucked and ready to cook, why not test out our Foolproof Boiled Corn method?
Bringing the water to a boil, shutting off the heat just before adding the corn, and then covering the pot ensures that the corn’s temperature will rise to the range of 150 and 170 degrees—a window in which the kernels’ starches have gelatinized but little of their pectin has broken down. Translation? Perfectly sweet, snappy kernels.
Here are a few of our other favorite ways to enjoy corn. And for more information about this beloved summer vegetable—including how to shop for it, store it, and freeze it—check out our list of 10 Good Things to Know About Fresh Corn.