You may wonder why in the world you would need corn stock. It never occurred to me either until I set off in a quest to make an excellent bowl of corn chowder and was struggling with getting enough corny flavor.
The first batch I made was with water as the base. It was good, but it needed a little more complexity
So I tried chicken stock next. It definitely had more body, and more meaty flavory, but it was still missing that big corn punch I wanted.
Then I remembered that in Modernist Cuisine at Home there is a recipe for toasted corn stock.
The fun part about this recipe is that it uses all of the parts of the ear of corn that you’d normally discard. After you cut the kernels off of the cob, you’ll use them to make stock. This is a great way to use up food scraps that you might normally just toss out (if you aren’t composting, that is). Another example is how I use leftover parmesan rinds to make flavor parmesan stock for soup or risotto.
It even uses the husks. You’ll toast them in the oven while getting everything else ready. If you don’t have a Pressure Cooker or Instant Pot, you could also cook the ingredients in a large stock pot for several hours.
I had imagined that the final product produced by the corn stock recipe would be this sweet, intensely flavored corn juice. Sort of like a glass of fresh carrot juice. It’s not, really. Probably because it’s made from husks and cobs. Seriously. There’s a reason why we don’t eat husks and cobs.
What it does though, is round out the corn flavor in your chowder, making it more complex and full bodied. And it’s not that much extra work, considering you already have all of the ingredients on your counter when making corn chowder, anyway.
Toasted Corn Stock is also excellent for making other corn dishes like polenta or cornbread.
If you’re interested in other pressure cooked stock recipes, check out this one for a Pressure Cooked Beef Stock made with short ribs
( Recipe adapted from Modernist Cuisine at Home)
Toasted Corn Stock, made in a Pressure Cooker or Instant Pot, is a great way to use leftover corn cobs and husks to make a stock perfectly suited for soups, chowders and polenta
- 6 Ears Fresh Corn
- 5 Cups Water
- 1 Chopped Yellow Onion
- 2 Tablespoons Whole Black Peppercorns
Remove the husks from the ears and place on a sheet pan. Place a wire rack on top of them and toast for 15 minutes at 350 degrees. Check on them and continue toasting until they have a nice golden color
Cut the kernels from the cob and reserve in a bowl (especially if you'll be making chowder)
Place the husks in the pressure cooker and cover with the cobs. Add the chopped yellow onion, peppercorns and water.
Pressure cook for 45 minutes and strain the liquid through a cheesecloth before using