Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Dried Corn Experiment

~karen hunter
The corn we grew last summer was, in my Eastern Canadian opinion, not very tasty. Of course, I've had GREAT Comox Valley corn, but apparently we failed to grow the sweet, juicy kind I was hoping for. So what to do with a few rows of corn that you don't want to eat fresh or freeze?

Being a huge fan of the Rebar cookbook, I am known to make its version of buttermilk corn cakes with blueberries (p. 74). The ingredients call for both fine and stone ground corn meal. I will admit absolutely that this recipe was the sole reason that I decided to harvest and husk all the somewhat dry and drying corn from the garden in late August last year. The experiment to make my own corn flour was born.

There may be something a little crazy about having 50 cobs of corn sitting quietly in a warm, dry and dusty kitchen. I'll let you decide. The experiment resulted in a scene that included cobs balancing on a homemade drying rack (meant for pasta). We waited a few weeks before hulling the cobs to ensure the kernels were bone dry. Despite all the waiting, the result was pretty fantastic! Oh, and the TASTE!!!

It worked so well that I have used most of the dried kernels in various pancakes, waffles and corn breads. Being the recent owner of a new Estrella tortilla press, you know what I'll be up to next in the kitchen to finish the last of my beloved kernels. I can't wait to grow corn just to be able to dry it all over again.

Now, you may be wondering - how to crush hard kernels into meal or flour? For that I used what has come to be a trusty friend. It makes amazing fresh and tasty flour, and it can be adjusted to pastry-fine texture or like stone ground. It also provides a form of light exercise on cold and rainy days... The contraption I use is a "Country Living Grain Mill" (http://countrylivinggrainmills.com). You can purchase electric models as well, but we like having our mill as a permanent fixture in the kitchen and it was a few hundred dollars cheaper than a quailty electric model. Either way, Happy Grinding!

1 comment:

  1. Where did you get the tortilla press?
    I have been looking for one!

    ReplyDelete