I won't pretend this is the healthiest way to prepare corn. Quite the contrary, it is probably one of the most gluttonous ways you could possibly prepare corn. Bacon, sour cream, onion, garlic and Cheddar cheese come together with the corn in a very mouth-watering way. This is one of those dishes I only make a few times a year, usually for the big Holidays. I don't think I have ever had a dish more requested by friends and family. I like to bake this corn casserole in my toaster oven while the main dish is in the full-sized oven. This way everything is hot and ready at the same time.
1/2 pound of bacon, preferably nitrate-free
1 large red onion
2 bags of frozen organic corn, thawed (non-organic corn is GMO over 90% of the time, so it is safest to stick with organic)
4 medium garlic cloves
1/4 cup of whole milk
1 cup of full-fat sour cream
1/2 pound of sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
1/4 cup of chopped fresh chives
Chop the bacon into small pieces. Cook it in a large pot over low heat until fully cooked. Take the bacon out and set aside (but leave all the drippings in the pot.) Chop the onion. Cook the chopped onion in the bacon drippings over medium to low heat till slightly browned. Finely mince the garlic. Add both the minced garlic and the thawed corn to the pot. Cook for about 3 to 5 minutes stirring often. You want to brown everything a little bit but stop just before the garlic burns. Add the whole milk, full-fat sour cream, sea salt and black pepper. Stir well, and scrape up any burnt bits on the bottom of the pan (that's extra flavor!) Gently fold in the cooked bacon and shredded cheddar cheese. Put into a baking dish and bake uncovered at 350 degrees F until bubbly; that should take about 30 minutes. Gently fold in the fresh chives just before serving.
I usually make this dish a day or two ahead of time but I don't actually bake it until the day I'm using it. I think it tastes better after all the flavors have had time to mingle a bit. You just need to bake it about 10 or 15 minutes longer if it's cold. That is another reason I like making this corn casserole for Holidays; it is nice to be able to prepare some of the food ahead of time without compromising on flavor or quality.