Fresh corn with bacon is the exact right balance of tender and crispy and salty with starchy sweet. An easy recipe for a healthy comfort food side dish.
- Taking fresh corn off the cob makes it easier to eat.
- Just over 100 calories per serving even with butter and bacon!
- Use fresh or frozen corn for a fantastic year-round healthy comfort food.
It is not often I get a chance to include bacon in my world of eating for weight loss. When I do use it, bacon generally appears as a seasoning rather than a substantial ingredient. A small bit of bacon gives a nice smoky flavor and crispy texture to simple recipes like salads and soups. For this easy recipe corn with bacon is the exact right balance of salty with starchy sweet.
Like so many teens and pre-teens, I spent three years with a mouth full of braces. Among the list of off limits foods was corn-on-the-cob. For three summers I couldn't sink my teeth into a butter-soaked ear of corn. Abstaining from this highly anticipated treat threw the rhythm of my year slightly out of sync.
To help me enjoy corn off the cob, my mom found a handy tool for stripping the kernels from the cob. It consisted of a serrated metal cuff fastened to the inside of a narrow sort of tongs. You slid the tapered end of the corn into the cuff, took firm hold of the tongs with one hand and the ear of corn with the other, then wiggled and twisted until the cob was stripped of its kernels. The device worked well enough that my sister and I both used it through our time in braces. (shop amazon: oxo corn peeler)
My kids were very small when I handed them their first ears of corn. I watched excitedly anticipating an immediate love for one of my own favorite summer foods. Imagine my disappointment when I realized neither offspring shares my love of sinking their baby teeth into a tender ear of fresh corn.
Luckily the boys are happy to eat corn removed from the cob. I also discovered a nice sharp chef's knife is even better at separating kernels from the cob than Mom's gadget – although, I have a feeling she knew that but didn't trust us to safely wield the combo of sharp knife and slippery ear of corn. (shop amazon: electric knife sharpener) Cutting the corn off the cob for the kids inspired me to think of other ways to serve peak of the season corn.
At first glace this side dish requires a little extra prep in that you need to cut all the kernels from the cobs, an admittedly messy task. Once you have liberated the corn the cooking is quick. The combination of flavors is wonderfully comforting. And there is bacon for your reward! I know you will agree skillet corn with bacon is worth the small effort. If, however, you don't agree or fresh corn is out of season, you can use frozen – which was picked at it freshest so it counts.
Skillet Corn with Bacon
- 4 ears of corn shucked and kernels removed
- 4 strips approx. ¼ pound smoked bacon, diced into ¼ inch strips
- 2 teaspoon reserved bacon fat
- 1 ½ cups diced white onion
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ⅛ teaspoon chili flakes
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
- Cook the bacon in a large heavy bottomed skillet over medium high heat until it is crisp. Transfer the bacon to a paper towel lined plate. Then carefully remove the bacon fat from the pan to a heat safe container for disposal (such as an empty soup can) reserving just enough fat to coat the bottom of the pan – about 2 teaspoons.
- Reduce the heat to medium then add the onions to the hot pan. Sauté the onions until the soften and the edges begin to brown, 3 to 5 minutes. Add the corn, salt, and chili flakes, stir carefully as the pan will be quite full, stir occasionally, cook un-covered until the corn is tender, about 8-12 minutes.
- When the corn is cooked add the butter, stirring until it is melted, then mix in the bacon. Serve hot.