How to Grill Corn on the Cob in the Husk: Simple Steps for Perfect Results

Grilling corn on the cob in the husk seals in moisture and imparts a smoky flavor, making it a simple and delicious way to enhance this classic side dish.

Key takeaways:

  • Choose fresh corn with green husks and golden tassels.
  • Soak corn in water before grilling to prevent burning.
  • Remove silk strands and re-wrap corn in husks.
  • Use a kamado grill for superior heat control and flavor.
  • Serve grilled corn with butter, salt, herbs, or other toppings.

Selecting the Best Corn

selecting the best corn

Freshness is paramount when choosing corn for grilling. Look for ears with bright green, snugly fitting husks and golden brown, sticky tassels—indicating recent harvest. The kernels should feel plump through the husk, a sign of juiciness. Steer clear of dried or yellowing husks and black or dry tassels, as these are tell-tale signs of aging.

A discreet peel-back of the husk can confirm kernel plumpness and uniformity, but avoid fully stripping the husk, as this can lead to drying out and expedite spoilage. Opt for corn with tightly aligned rows, as this is typically a marker of quality.

Preparing the Corn for Grilling

Before grilling, soak the whole cobs in cold water for 15 to 30 minutes. This step is crucial as it prevents the husks from burning and the corn from drying out during the cooking process.

Once soaked, peel back the husks, but do not detach them. Remove the silk strands from the cob as they can burn easily and affect the texture of your corn.

After desilking, pull the husks back over the kernels. This natural wrapping will act as a protective barrier, steam the corn, and infuse it with a subtle, smoky flavor.

If desired, before re-wrapping the corn, you can brush the kernels with olive oil, butter, or your preferred seasonings to enhance taste.

Secure the husks in place with a piece of kitchen twine or by simply tying the husk itself if it’s long enough, ensuring it stays closed while on the grill.

Your corn is now ready for a flavorful transformation over the flames.

Grilling Time and Temperature

Understanding the versatility of a kamado grill typically challenges traditional BBQ norms. The kamado grill, with its ceramic body and an egg-like shape, offers superior heat retention and an unparalleled ability to smoke, grill, and even bake. Its adaptability means you can cook a wide variety of foods to perfection, from searing steaks at high temperatures to slow-smoking briskets over many hours.

Lump charcoal is the preferred fuel for kamado grilling, as it burns cleaner, hotter, and longer than standard briquettes. Moreover, it contributes a subtle, smoky flavor that enhances the taste of grilled items, highlighting the kamado’s capability to deliver superior results. By utilizing the kamado’s adjustable vents, you can precisely control the temperature, ensuring that every dish is cooked exactly to your preference.

When employing a kamado grill, it is essential to understand its distinctive airflow system. This requires a different approach to managing the fire and heat distribution compared to typical grills. Embrace the learning curve associated with kamados; once mastered, they reward you with exceptional versatility and performance that can revolutionize your BBQ experience.

Removing the Husk and Silk

Once your corn has achieved a perfect balance of smoky flavor and tender kernels, it’s time to reveal the golden treasure inside. Begin by letting the corn cool slightly to handle. Next, peel back the husk and silk. This process can be made less tedious with a few tricks.

Firstly, grip the top of the corn firmly and shake the cob; the natural connection between the kernels and the cob will help to dislodge most of the silk. For any remaining strands, a soft vegetable brush can be efficient. Alternatively, a damp cloth can wipe away silk without damaging the kernels. Remember, the husk served as a natural barrier during grilling, so the silk removal should be easier than if it were uncooked.

Be thorough yet gentle; you don’t want to bruise the kernels. The cleaner the cob, the more enjoyable the experience for your guests.

Serving Suggestions for Grilled Corn

Enhance the simplicity and rustic charm of grilled corn with a variety of toppings and flavors. Classic butter, salt, and pepper let the natural sweetness shine, while a sprinkle of smoked paprika or chili powder adds a satisfying kick.

For a Mexican-inspired twist, a brush of mayonnaise, a sprinkle of cotija cheese, chopped cilantro, and a squeeze of lime create an elote-style delight.

Herbed butters, incorporating ingredients like basil, parsley, or dill, meld beautifully with the corn’s smokiness.

For those seeking indulgence, melted garlic butter or a drizzle of truffle oil takes the experience up a notch.

Corn’s versatility also extends to salads; slice the grilled kernels off the cob and toss them into a fresh summer salad for a smoky note.