Is oven roasted corn awesome?
July 31, 2010 6:09 PM   Subscribe

Have you ever roasted corn in your gas oven's broiler?

Y'know one of those broilers at the bottom of the oven where you pull out the tray? Am I crazy for thinking this could yield something tasty? My plan is to husk the corn and grease it up and broil until it's a bit charred. Stop me if this is a waste of fresh corn!
posted by mandymanwasregistered to Food & Drink (17 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
To broil corn, lightly oil it in olive oil and sprinkle some herbs over the corn, if desired. Stick the corn under the broiler in a sturdy pan for a few minutes, turning partway through for even heating. Baked or roasted corn can be made by preheating the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit (204 degrees Celsius) and cooking oiled corn in an oven-proof baking dish, or rolled in foil, for five to 15 minutes. If other foods are being cooked at the same time but they require a different temperature, just leave the corn in a bit less or more, depending on the temperature. Via.
posted by amro at 6:16 PM on July 31, 2010 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: I guess I'm looking for info specific to gas oven broilers where the corn will be much closer to the heat source than something at the top of the oven.
posted by mandymanwasregistered at 6:24 PM on July 31, 2010

If there's a difference between broiling in a gas oven and broiling in an electric oven, I don't know it, and I have a gas oven.
posted by amro at 6:26 PM on July 31, 2010

I've done it! Wrap it in tinfoil after you coat it in whatever delicious seasonings you're using, and pop it in there. Turn it over once. Without the foil you're taking on a higher risk for a brutal charring, also it helps to keep the yummy stuff right up against the other yummy stuff.

My reasoning for proceeding in this fashion was based on the times in boy scouts when we'd wrap husked corn in tinfoil and throw them into the coals at the base of the fire.
posted by carsonb at 6:28 PM on July 31, 2010

I'd treat it just like grilling corn. Leave the last layer of the husk in place, it should cover the whole ear but be thin enough that you can see the kernels through it, and cut off any silk that sticks out. Then just put them under the fire, turn them over every minute or so until the husk starts to peal away, <>
Brush off the husk with a towel, slather with butter and salt, eat.
posted by Some1 at 6:42 PM on July 31, 2010

Never broiled, but broiling is essentially grilling and this is how I grill corn. Soak the cobs in water for 20 minutes or so beforehand and then stick them in there.
posted by InsanePenguin at 6:45 PM on July 31, 2010

I mean, I've never broiled corn specifically. Of course I've broiled.
posted by InsanePenguin at 6:45 PM on July 31, 2010

Response by poster: Oh man, I guess I shoulda emphasized the charred part of things, ie not covered. I had a roasted corn salsa sort of thing the other week that was like this and is my vague inspiration for attempting such things.

Anyway, I'll just give it a try and see what happens with one of these pieces. My experience with gas oven bottom broiler trays has been that things brown/char a lot faster than the sort where you are using the top of the oven.
posted by mandymanwasregistered at 6:49 PM on July 31, 2010

Do you want them charred? If you roast over an open flame, you can get them charred. If you really don't want them charred at all, the wrapped in foil method is probably you best bet (it's really baking, more than roasting). You could even do this on your stove top. Just sit there with the ear and a pair of tongs and keep rolling it around. (That's the way I roast peppers)
posted by Some1 at 7:01 PM on July 31, 2010

Yes, oven roasted corn is awesome, but it's easier to control and get the char you want on the stove top. If you have a cast iron skillet, that's ideal, but any pan that fits your ears of corn will do. Put a little lubrication on your corn (butter's good but oil's not going to burn so much) and be sure to have your vent open and your fan going and probably a window open. Then just let your corn cook on the stove top on a medium-high heat, turning occasionally, until everything's charred to the point you want. That way you can take off the ears that are done and let them cool, as well. Sprinkle your seasonings on after the fact so you don't burn them. I suggest smoked paprika, salt, and a little cinnamon.
posted by Mizu at 7:41 PM on July 31, 2010

A broiler is just an upside down grill. The only thing to be concerned about is that the liquid that comes off the corn will have nowhere to go -- there are no coals beneath this "grill." But a simple roasting rack solves that problem.
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 9:34 PM on July 31, 2010

I've been doing this a bunch lately, but with kernels rather than the whole cob. Foil line a cookie sheet, slice the corn off the cob and arrange it in a layer one kernel deep, put under the broiler for a couple minutes. Check it frequently and stir it around once in a while to keep the char evenly distributed, when it looks ready take it out and add to salsa/salads/cornbread/etc.
posted by contraption at 10:54 PM on July 31, 2010

Never broiled, but broiling is essentially grilling

Can't agree -- similar, but not the same. With grilling, the meat's in contact with the hottest metal, charring guaranteed. With broiling the heat source is just above and very close to the meat, but NOT in direct contact. I think the OP's specifiying a gas oven is an important distinction in this discussion, as the gas ovens I've known only have a burner below the oven compartment, and any broiling's done in that area underneath the oven "where you pull out the tray." But all the electric ovens I've known have heating elements both above and below the oven compartment, and the top element's only activated when you set the oven control all the way on, to the "broil" setting. This renders the little tray under the oven pointless IMO, usable only for storage -- any broiling must be performed in the oven compartment on the top rack, right underneath that upper heating element.
posted by Rash at 5:20 AM on August 1, 2010

Can't agree -- similar, but not the same. With grilling, the meat's in contact with the hottest metal, charring guaranteed.

Fair enough, but I'm going to going with Alton Brown on this one. He tells me it's just an upside down grill. FWIW, my gas oven doesn't have a separate broiling tray and I'd hate it if it did-where would I store my pans?!
posted by InsanePenguin at 6:29 AM on August 1, 2010

Response by poster: So contrary to my fears, the broiler took to long to get the kernels a bit dark and the corn ended up being a bit overcooked. I like the idea of using the stovetop burner next time!
posted by mandymanwasregistered at 11:10 AM on August 1, 2010

Another thing to try: Keep the husks on, trim off the tassel and any dry looking green parts. Soak them in the sink for a few minutes, then broil. You're looking for the husk to get a bit charred, but not set aflame. The corn inside will be smokey and deliciously steamed. Works great on a grill.
posted by fontophilic at 1:53 PM on August 1, 2010 [1 favorite]

I haven't done this, but I'd venture to say that cutting the kernels off the cob, seasoning them, and then roasting or broiling is going to give you more reproducible results. The differences in ear sizes would otherwise make consistency a nightmare, wouldn't it?
posted by OneMonkeysUncle at 2:04 PM on August 1, 2010

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