Boiled Corn on the Cob with Compound Butters

If you feed them they will vote. So hurry on out to Iowa where the political barbecue is making a comeback. The candidates for the Iowa Republican straw poll, which takes place this weekend, are campaigning in the Hawkeye state and among the incentives to bring voters to their tents is: BARBECUE. Potential voters (and who knows who else) will be given free tickets to attend the events, to listen to some entertainment, to listen (or not) to the candidates’ speeches and vote (or not). They are also invited to eat. The bet is, if you feed people for free they might vote for you. But just in case you think this is some sort of new political game, you should know that the politician who perfected the political free-barbecue-for-votes was William Henry Harrison, way back in 1840. One of his barbecues attracted about 30,000 people.  He trounced incumbent President Van Buren. Was it the food? Maybe. Maybe the food helped him win but it didn’t help much in the long run. Harrison died 32 days after his inauguration. So, onward. To this year’s first set of real election nonsense: what will they serve? My bet is there will be lots of chicken and ribs, boiled corn, maybe pie. The corn has been good lately, we’re coming right up to the height of the season. So don’t bother going to Iowa. Vote at home for a good dinner. Get some fresh corn (preferably at the Farmer’s market) and boil it up just before you serve it for dinner. Serve it plain, with butter or a flavored butter. Here’s how: Boiled Corn on the Cob 6 ears fresh corn 4 quarts water, approximately 1 cup milk, optional Just before cooking, remove the husks and silk from the ears of corn. Bring a large pan of water (about 4 quarts) to a boil. Add the milk if desired. Immerse the corn and let the liquid come to a boil. Turn off the heat, cover the pan and let the corn sit in the water for 5-10 minutes or until tender. Use tongs to remove the cobs. Serve plain, with butter or one of the flavored butters below. Makes 6 servings Flavored Butters: Blend ingredients thoroughly. Makes enough for 6 ears of corn. Chili Butter 4 tablespoons softened butter 1 teaspoon chili powder Scallion butter: 4 tablespoons softened butter 2 tablespoons finely chopped scallion Horseradish Butter: 4 tablespoons softened butter 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard 2 teaspoons prepared white horseradish Lemon-Herb Butter: 4 tablespoons softened butter 1 tablespoon lemon juice 1/2 teaspoon finely grated lemon peel 1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil 2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh chives (or scallion greens)

If you feed them they will vote.

So hurry on out to Iowa where the political barbecue is making a comeback. The candidates for the Iowa Republican straw poll, which takes place this weekend, are campaigning in the Hawkeye state and among the incentives to bring voters to their tents is: BARBECUE.

Potential voters (and who knows who else) will be given free tickets to attend the events, to listen to some entertainment, to listen (or not) to the candidates’ speeches and vote (or not).

They are also invited to eat.

The bet is, if you feed people for free they might vote for you.

But just in case you think this is some sort of new political game, you should know that the politician who perfected the political free-barbecue-for-votes was William Henry Harrison, way back in 1840. One of his barbecues attracted about 30,000 people. 

He trounced incumbent President Van Buren.

Was it the food?

Maybe. Maybe the food helped him win but it didn’t help much in the long run. Harrison died 32 days after his inauguration.

So, onward. To this year’s first set of real election nonsense: what will they serve?

My bet is there will be lots of chicken and ribs, boiled corn, maybe pie.

The corn has been good lately, we’re coming right up to the height of the season. So don’t bother going to Iowa. Vote at home for a good dinner. Get some fresh corn (preferably at the Farmer’s market) and boil it up just before you serve it for dinner. Serve it plain, with butter or a flavored butter. Here’s how:

Boiled Corn on the Cob

6 ears fresh corn

4 quarts water, approximately

1 cup milk, optional

Just before cooking, remove the husks and silk from the ears of corn. Bring a large pan of water (about 4 quarts) to a boil. Add the milk if desired. Immerse the corn and let the liquid come to a boil. Turn off the heat, cover the pan and let the corn sit in the water for 5-10 minutes or until tender. Use tongs to remove the cobs. Serve plain, with butter or one of the flavored butters below. Makes 6 servings

Flavored Butters: Blend ingredients thoroughly. Makes enough for 6 ears of corn.

Chili Butter

4 tablespoons softened butter

1 teaspoon chili powder

Scallion butter:

4 tablespoons softened butter

2 tablespoons finely chopped scallion

Horseradish Butter:

4 tablespoons softened butter

1 tablespoon Dijon mustard

2 teaspoons prepared white horseradish

Lemon-Herb Butter:

4 tablespoons softened butter

1 tablespoon lemon juice

1/2 teaspoon finely grated lemon peel

1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil

2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh chives (or scallion greens)