There are more than 50,000 different varieties of corn that vary in color, shape, and size. Yellow corn kernels fresh off the cob (a corncob has about 400–600 kernels) are a delicious side that goes well with a wide range of dishes. Fresh sweet corn is great eaten raw. However, corn on the cob also tastes delicious cooked or grilled. Dried corn kernels are also coarsely ground to make cornstarch.
From Wikipedia: “Sweet corn (Zea mays convar. saccharata var. rugosa; also called sugar corn and pole corn) is a variety of maize with a high sugar content. Sweet corn is the result of a naturally occurring recessive mutation in the genes which control conversion of sugar to starch inside the endosperm of the corn kernel. Unlike field corn varieties, which are harvested when the kernels are dry and mature (dent stage), sweet corn is picked when immature (milk stage) and prepared and eaten as a vegetable, rather than a grain. Since the process of maturation involves converting sugar to starch, sweet corn stores poorly and must be eaten fresh, canned, or frozen, before the kernels become tough and starchy.”
“In most of Latin America, sweet corn is traditionally eaten with beans; each plant is deficient in an essential amino acid that happens to be abundant in the other, so together sweet corn and beans form a protein-complete meal. ...
Similarly, sweet corn in Indonesia is traditionally ground or soaked with milk, which makes available the B vitamin niacin in the corn, the absence of which would otherwise lead to pellagra; in Brazil, a combination of ground sweet corn and milk is also the basis of various well-known dishes, such as pamonha and the pudding-like dessert curau, while sweet corn eaten directly off the cobs tends to be served with butter.
The kernels are boiled or steamed. In Europe, China, Korea, Japan and India, they are often used as a pizza topping, or in salads. Corn on the cob is a sweet corn cob that has been boiled, steamed, or grilled whole; the kernels are then eaten directly off the cob or cut off. ... Sweet corn can also be eaten as baby corn.”
Corn in the United States:
“In the United States, sweet corn is eaten as a steamed vegetable, or on the cob, usually served with butter and salt. It can be found in Tex-Mex cooking in chili, tacos, and salads. When corn is mixed with lima beans it is called succotash. Sweet corn is one of the most popular vegetables in the United States. Fresh, canned and frozen sweet corn rank among the top ten vegetables in value and per capital consumption. Frozen cut corn is exceeded only by frozen potato products while frozen corn on the cob is 4th following peas.
If left to dry on the plant, kernels may be taken off the cob and cooked in oil where, unlike popcorn, they expand to about double the original kernel size and are often called corn nuts. A soup may also be made from the plant, called sweet corn soup.”
“Sweet corn occurs as a spontaneous mutation in field corn and was grown by several Native American tribes. The Iroquois gave the first recorded sweet corn (called 'Papoon') to European settlers in 1779. It soon became a popular food in southern and central regions of the United States.
Open pollinated cultivars of white sweet corn started to become widely available in the United States in the 19th century. …
There are currently hundreds of cultivars, with more constantly being developed.”
“The fruit of the sweet corn plant is the corn kernel, a type of fruit called a caryopsis. The ear is a collection of kernels on the cob. Because corn is a monocot, there is always an even number of rows of kernels. The ear is covered by tightly wrapped leaves called the husk. Silk is the name for the pistillate flowers, which emerge from the husk. The husk and silk are removed by hand, before boiling but not necessarily before roasting, in a process called husking or shucking.”