Time is ripe for sweet corn at Downtown Market | PostIndependent.com

Time is ripe for sweet corn at Downtown Market

Sharill Hawkins
Glenwood's Downtown Market
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado

GLENWOOD SPRINGS, Colorado – When I make new acquaintances, they often ask if I am a Colorado native. I tell them that I moved here from northeast Iowa and many times they respond with, “Oh, corn-fed!”

As a young girl, I would watch the cattle in the Iowa corn fields, munching on the last of the field corn, and it is true that I would eat several ears of sweet corn for a complete meal. I guess they are right, I am “corn fed.”

At Glenwood’s Downtown Market this week, look for corn. You will find it fresh on the cob, popped, grilled and in tamales and tortillas.

Z’s Orchard will have big full ears of sweetcorn. Deborah Madison, in her book “Local Flavors: Cooking and Eating from America’s Farmers’ Markets,” gives this advice about choosing fresh ears of corn:

Never pull back the husks. The husks are there to protect the kernel and keep them moist. As soon as they’re loosened, the corn begins to dry out, especially in the arid climate of the West. If you need to know more about the corn you’re buying than what you can see, try feeling the kernels through the husks. Press your fingers along the ears, search for the plumpness that tells you that the kernels are well filled out.

Z’s Orchard, along with other market growers, will appreciate this technique when you are choosing your sweet corn.

If you don’t feel like cooking sweet corn when you get home and want instant gratification, stop by Andy’s Kitchen for his grilled sweet corn. Enjoy an ear of his grilled corn with his homemade no-nitrate German-style brat.

Ron Brenner comes every week to the Tuesday market with his “I’m Popping…Kettle Corn” all the way from Delta. Brenner brings his original recipe kettle corn plus cheddar cheese, caramel, sour cream and chives, and jalapeno flavors, or just have it plain.

Also on the east end of Ninth Street is La Colemna Panaderia. They provide our market customers with beautiful, delicious baked goods. In their booth you will also find La Milpa Tortilleria’s white corn tortillas, a good alternative for a wheat-free diet.

If you have ever made homemade tamales, you appreciate the time it takes to prepare them. Laura Perez brings her Colorado’s Best Tamales to the market. Mild, spicy and vegetarian corn tamales are offered. Enjoy these homemade, authentic Mexican tamales at the market or save them for lunch on Wednesday.

I’ll be in the cooking tent at 6 p.m. serving some Greek polenta made with ground cornmeal. I’ll be topping it with beef and lamb from Nicky’s Quickies Greek Gyros booth and then adding a few caramelized onions.

Nicky’s serves market goers a choice of four different gyros, a Quickie, a Crispie, a Veggie and an Eggie.

I’ll also be making fresh corn fritters, served with Wild Mountain Honey. Melissa Adams and Derrick Maness harvest honey locally from the base of Mount Sopris and throughout the greater Roaring Fork Valley. Their bees collect the nectar of wild flowers to make their unique honeys. Adams and Wild Mountain Honey are at the market every week.

Following the cooking demo this week, Skip from Early Morning Orchard will be giving the weekly garden talk. He will be discussing growing and pruning fruit trees.

All the Pretty Horses will begin performing in the music tent at 5:30 p.m. The group began with Olivia Pevec, Mateo Sandate, Mike Spring and Bob Dylan. It turned a bit country because Olivia’s voice got twangy doing ranch work. Ashton Taufer and Aaron Taylor joined the group. Local favorite Frank Martin is joining the group this summer while Mike Spring travels the world. Their music is Americana, country and rock. This week the music sponsor is Balcomb and Green P.C.

Glenwood’s Downtown Market is open 4 p.m. till dusk every Tuesday, rain or shine, in Centennial Park at Ninth and Grand Avenue. Do your healthy food shopping and take the time to visit with your friends, neighbors and guests in our community. I’ll see you there.

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