I have to admit, I was concerned that we were going to miss the prime sweet corn season while we were gallivanting around Alaska for two weeks. But I needn’t have worried. It turns out that our soggy chilly spring was good for one thing; it made for a late staggered start to planting season by my favorite sweet corn farmers; the Hokenesses. So, I have regularly stood, with dozens of other sweet corn lovers, at the flatbed trailer on 10th and Cleveland, digging through the huge pile of ears freshly picked from their farm each morning near Adrian, Minnesota.
This year’s harvest is again deliciously sweet and, at just a dollar a dozen, (provided you buy one other produce item) a great deal for those wanting to can or freeze some to enjoy on a cold winter’s day. Does anybody “can” corn anymore? In my mind’s eye I can still see my mom holding her butcher knife standing over a stack of freshly picked sweet corn piled high on the kitchen table. With lightning speed that came from years of practice, she’d hold the fresh ear (never cooked) upright on her cutting board, slice downward with incredible accuracy so full kernels would tumble off the cob in submission. Once clean, she’d use the back of the knife to scrape the cob removing all the delicious corn milk. I don’t remember the other canning procedures but I do recall the joy of eating thick homemade “cream-style” corn as part of a Sunday dinner in December. I was determined to make sure our family would be able to enjoy some locally grown sweet corn for Christmas so I headed back to the flatbed this morning to pick up a few dozen ears. At the Lund corn processing factory, it’s my job to do the husking while Linda blanches the ears then trims off the sweet golden nuggets and packs them in freezer bags. (No scraping. whole kernel only) We usually put up a dozen or so packages. The trick is trying to make them last until the Holidays. Linda’s sister doesn’t blanch the corn before trimming and freezing and says it works great..just cook a few minutes before serving . So we chose to eliminate that time consuming step this time. I hope she’s right and we don’t get worms.
Speaking of corn, I hope to consume at least one giant corn dog at the State Fair in Huron this week. Jim Woster and I will be singing with Mogen’s Heroes on the Freedom Stage at 3 and 6 PM Thursday September 1st. It should be a fun time and if you haven’t heard Mogen’s Heroes, featuring John Mogen, Denny Gale and Bill Hoffman, for a while…you’re in for a treat. Fun songs and amazing harmonies.
Plans are already in the works for next Spring’s 4th annual South Dakota Music Association Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony and concert. The list of this year’s inductees and performers will be announced in a few weeks. It’s certainly gong to be hard to top the 2011 show featuring “The Mob” but we’re going to try. Circle Saturday April 21st on your calendar at the Ramkota Exhibit Hall.
Anyone who is a fan of early Rock and Roll should certainly check out the South Dakota Rock and Roll museum located on the Washington Pavilion’s 2nd floor mezzanine in Sioux Falls. On display is a fascinating assembly of memorabilia from rock music’s golden age including guitars (Myron Lee’s famous black Gretch is there) and other musical instruments played by some of your favorite bands. There are juke boxes, early band posters, stage uniforms hundreds of rare photos and albums. The Hall of Fame board wants to keep changing and adding to the exhibit so if you have any collectible items from that era in your possession and would be willing to loan them to the museum for a time, we’d sure like to hear from you. To find out who to contact and see other interesting stuff about the South Dakota Rock and Roll Music Association, CLICK HERE.
Well, Linda is all done shucking and bagging the sweet corn; 19 quart freezer bags full. Somehow that just doesn’t seem like enough so there’s a good chance I’ll be waiting in the Austad’s parking around 10:30 tomorrow morning craining my neck to catch first site of the Hokeness corn truck arriving from Adrian. We gotta keep pickin’ while the pickin’s good.