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Gourmet Tin Foil Dinner: Corn on the Cob

19 June 2014

I grew up on tin foil dinners and dinners spent up in the canyon during the summer, it was so much cooler up there than down in the valley we would often go enjoy the trees and the rushing mountain run-off and s’mores. Years ago I did a post on Tin Foil Dinners that still gets a lot of traffic during the summer, but my taste for camping food has changed dramatically since 2008. (2008!? Holy crap that makes me feel old!)

A few weeks ago J-Mo and I spent a wonderful evening in the canyon with friends, and instead of the typical ground beef-carrots-potato dinner, I decided to go out on a limb and try something completely out of my comfort zone. I am thrilled to report that this recipe will make it into my regular camping rotation. So easy, sooooo delicious.

Gourmet TIn Foil Dinner Corn on the Cob 3_heidikinscooks_June 2014The trickiest thing about cooking over an open fire is, well, cooking over an open fire. There are no ways to really gauge temperature and you can’t just flip on the oven light to see how your dinner is coming along. However, build your fire and the let it burn for a good 30-45 minutes, you want some white-hot coals and a few licks of fire on your logs, not a pile of flames. These cooked on flames and it was a little bit less than ideal, it cooks much hotter and much faster than coals, but also less evenly. Do as I say, not as I do.

Gourmet Tin Foil Dinner: Corn on the Cob

Campfire with white-hot coals and only a few flames

6 ears fresh corn on the cob

6 tablespoons butter

6 ice cubes

6 sheets tin foil

salt and pepper

Husk your corn and pick the hairy thread things off (don’t burn the husks, they are too wet and will smoke you out of your campsite). For each ear you want to slather it with some butter, salt and pepper, add an ice-cube to each square of foil and then roll it “tootsie-roll” style twisting off the ends. The ice will melt and help “steam” your kernels, I was surprised at how much of a difference this made. (I put a handful of cubes into a ziploc bag and brought them in our cooler.) When your coals are ready, pop these babies right on top and let them cook for about 20-25 minutes, turning over occasionally.

Gourmet Tin Foil Dinner Corn on the Cob 1_heidikinscooks_June 2014

You want that fine balance between corn that is no longer raw, but not yet charred. However, the little roasted bits are so delicious, so don’t pull them off too soon.

Add some more salt and pepper, hot sauce, rosemary, or mayo and lime, and enjoy!

A Few Tips for Campfire Cooking:

  • Cooking over a fire takes a while, it takes a while to start your fire and it takes some time before it’s ready to cook on.
  • Make sure you bring extra wood (for s’mores) and at least 2 gallons of water for dousing your coals before you leave the campsite (if you have water at your campsite, then make sure to bring a gallon jug to get it from the river/faucet to your fire pit).
  • Bring a pair of long fire-resistant tongs, and/or a pair of heavy-duty leather gloves for retrieving your dinner.
  • A shovel for moving your coals around is much more precise than using a stick, but a big stick will work just fine.
  • You can always pull your dinner out to check it, re-wrap, and pop it back in if it’s not done yet, but you will lose some of the steam and the tight foil seal by doing so.
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