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I am trying to roast the corn in the oven, by:

  • leaving it in its husk
  • wrapping it in tin-foil

There are results, but far from real-grill roasted corn.

Any pointers on how to really do it?

EDIT:

Cooking times, temperatures? (Celsius please)

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2 Answers

There is always a debate on in-the-husk versus out-of-the-husk with roasted corn, but I fall firmly on the out-of-the-husk side of the debate. When you roast corn in the husk, the steam that is created stays largely next to the kernels. When you remove the husk, your corn is cooked with dry heat, which provides a really nice texture that has the significant difference from boiling that you're looking for.

Editing to add: the reason this prevents development of 'roasted' flavours is that dryness is needed for caramelization processes to occur. Excess moisture prevents browning from happening, and either the husk or the tinfoil will trap too much steam; you are essentially steaming the corn (wet cooking) as opposed to roasting it (a dry method).

To keep the kernels from completely drying out while still charring nicely, slather with softened butter and season to your preference. You can also use a Mexican Corn-style sauce.

I would also use the broiler to simulate more of the kind of heat a grill provides. Using the broiler (set to high) you only need to cook for a few minutes until you reach the desired char - ten or so.

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+1 on the broiler. –  Erik P. Oct 19 '10 at 14:51
    
can I just say... slathering the corn in butter before baking sounds outrageously delicious! –  lomaxx Oct 20 '10 at 9:08
    
@lomaxx - butter plus season salt plus a cracked pepper blend is definitely delicious. Enough butter drips off to keep the whole thing from being unbearably oily, but enough stays to make it extremely tasty. –  justkt Oct 20 '10 at 14:12
    
More accurately, moisture is the enemy of caramelization processes. In order for sugars to brown, moisture needs to be at a minimum. –  daniel Oct 22 '10 at 10:49
    
@daniel - thanks - mind if I (or you, since you have the rep) update the answer to make it more correct? –  justkt Oct 22 '10 at 12:13
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Personally I prefer (for the sake of time) to dry roast them in a skillet. It works in a pinch to char them, and it's also easy to add spices at the same time.

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