Preparing Corn for Exhibition


Today I’m here to tell you how to exhibit
corn at the fair. When the corn is exhibited at the fair, what the judge is going to look
for is to see that the kernels are filled out all the way to the tip. Now, it doesn’t
have to be filled out completely to the tip, because sometimes corn doesn’t always do
that—but is almost filled out as possible. He or she is also going to see that the kernels
are as in even, straight a row, and the other thing that they’re going to look for is
that the butt-end of the corn is trimmed very neatly and cleanly, and that the outer flag
leaves are left on. So, what I want to tell you is how to get
to that particular stage. When you’re selecting the corn, hopefully you’re not going to
be pulling back all the husks to see what the corn is on the inside and then putting
it back, because the judge is going to notice that you did that. But you what you want to
do, is you can actually feel the corn all the way to the tip and see how well filled
it is. Also, when the silks are brown, that’s a
good indicator that that corn is mature. So try to select corn that is even in size as
possible, and be sure again, that you leave the outer wrapper leaves on. Now, sometimes exhibitors will take off a
few of those outer leaves that are a little bit random and get rid of them—that’s
not a problem. So, once you have picked the corn and you’ve selected those that are
about the same size, you’re going to trim that butt-end so it is fairly even and straight
all the way across. And that’s nothing more than just making
a nice, clean cut with a pair of scissors or some sharp shears. So, you’re going to
exhibit the corn usually five ears on a plate. This wrapper leaf looks kind of bad; I’m
going to pull of this one. And then I’m going to trim the bottom, here, and then there’s
another little leaf that’s coming off. So, I’m going to exhibit that one with that
one. This one, I’m going to trim again. These are all pretty much about the same size.
The other thing, you can trim the silks just a little bit if you want to, to straighten
them off, but typically you want to leave them on there. That one looks a little bit
small. This one is about more of the same size. I’m
going to trim the bottom—that lower leaf. And then one more will complete the exhibit.
I’m going to trim the bottom here. Check for any leaves or loose leaves that need to
come off. That looks pretty good. And that is my plate of corn to be exhibited. If you pick the corn the day that you’re
going to exhibit, that would be the best ideal, because it’s going to be the freshest, and
it’s going indicate that that corn is at its peak. If you pick the corn early and you
leave it to sit out, it’s going to begin to age, and the judge is going to know that
because the husks are going to turn very crepey, and it will have a dry look to it. Once they go into the corn and they press
their thumb into the kernel to see how fresh it is, it’s not going to be very fresh at
all. So again, you want to pick your corn the day of the show if possible, or if you
need to pick it the night before, make sure that you move it in to a cool location. As always, make sure that you read the rulebook
to make sure that you’re following the guidelines for the show. Hopefully, this will give you
a blue ribbon at the fair for your corn.

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