It wouldn’t be July without sweet corn. My grandparents were farmers, and July meant it was time for creamed corn, corn on the cob and other corn-based dishes.

When you buy fresh corn, refrigerate it because the cold helps slow the starch conversion and preserve the sweetness.

There are so many cooking methods when it comes to corn on the cob, but I prefer the microwave because it’s the easiest. If you’ve never microwaved yours before, simply place the corn in its husk in the microwave and microwave for 3 minutes for one cob, 4 minutes for two, or roughly 5 for three cobs (may have to add an extra 30 seconds). The only downfall to the microwave is you have to shuck them when the corn is still hot. I use an oven mitt to do this.

When boiling corn, add 1/2 cup of sugar to the water.

If you want to make any of these recipes when corn is not in season or don’t want to take the time to use real cobs, on average an ear of corn will yield 1/2 cup, so you can figure out how much canned corn to substitute. So basically, a can of corn is about four ears.

Corn and bacon pair together beautifully, so two of my recipes showcase this combination. I have a fresh corn and bacon salad with grape tomatoes and basil. It’s so refreshing and tastes like summer.

I also made a luscious corn and bacon dip with taco seasoning and cheese. It’s fabulous and will be a hit at your party. Serve it with tortilla chips. If you like heat, you can add green chilies to the recipe.

And corn reminds me of Grandma, so I made creamed corn in her honor. It’s not her recipe, but it’s still comforting.

I hope you enjoy the recipes.

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Fresh corn and bacon salad

7 ears of cooked corn

1 (21/2-ounce) bag of real bacon pieces

1 1/4 cups sliced grape tomatoes

2-3 tablespoons minced red onion

10 basil leaves, sliced

Dressing:

2 tablespoons sugar

1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar

3 tablespoons canola oil

Salt and pepper to taste

For the salad: Place three ears of corn in their husks in the microwave and microwave for 5 minutes. Remove and microwave the next three for 5 minutes. Zap the last one for 3 minutes. Allow to cool until you can handle the cobs, at least 20 minutes.

When cool enough to handle, shuck the corn, remove the silks and slice off the cob. Place in a large bowl and add the bag of bacon pieces. Slice the tomatoes and then salt the tomatoes before adding to the corn. Chop the onion and place it in the bowl. Toss the mixture. Next, make your dressing.

Stir together the sugar and apple cider vinegar first, until well combined, then add in canola oil and stir until thick. Pour over the corn and stir. It’s a very light dressing. You can serve immediately or cover and refrigerate until time to serve.

Add basil just before serving because basil can turn black, which is not very attractive.

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Creamed corn

5 ears of corn

2 tablespoons butter

1 cup half and half

1 teaspoon sugar

1/3 cup heavy whipping cream

Salt and pepper to taste

Stand corn up in a large dish and cut kernels off the cob and then turn the knife around and scrape out the milk.

In a large pot, heat the butter and then add the corn and its milk. Stir to coat. Add half and half and sugar and bring to a gentle simmer over low or low-medium heat. You will need to stir frequently so it does not curdle.

Cook corn for 15 minutes and then add the heavy cream, salt and pepper and cook another 10 minutes until mixture thickens and corn is tender. Remove from heat and allow it to rest for 5 minutes before serving which will allow it to thicken more.

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Warm corn and bacon dip

2 1/2 ears of corn on the cob

1 (8-ounce) cream cheese, softened

2 teaspoons taco seasoning

1/2 cup chopped bacon pieces

1/2 cup mayonnaise

2 green onions, chopped

1 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese

Tortilla chips for serving

Cut the corn off the cobs. If the cobs are very large and meaty, you can get away with using two cobs.

Stir together the corn, cream cheese and taco seasoning until well combined. Add in the bacon, mayonnaise, half the green onion and half the cheddar cheese. Stir until combined and then spread into a shallow pie plate. Top the dish with the rest of the cheese and the rest of the onion.

Bake for 20 minutes or until golden. Serve warm with tortilla chips.

Juliana Goodwin is author of “Rotisserie Chicken Queen: 50 Fabulous Recipes That Start With Rotisserie Chicken.” Contact her at julianalovesfood23@gmail.com. Please put “recipe” in the subject line.