Thursday, July 9, 2009
Home Made Corn Meal
I wanted to make homemade corn meal for a while. I thought it would be simple enough and decided to do it without doing any online research. It's easy enough to make using some pretty basic supplies.
I started out by scraping the kernels from about 8 ears. I also scraped the pulp and put them onto my dehydrating trays. I dehydrated the kernels overnight at 105 degrees. The kernels seemed pretty dry so I processed them in the food processor only to find that there was still a lot of moisture. That's when I went online.
So, ideally you should dry the kernels still on the cob. Round 1 goes to the Internet, oops. Then once the kernels are dried it's best to use a grain mill to grind the corn into meal. The grinders are not expensive (I found a nicely reviewed one on Amazon for about $ 30), but I had already started down this path. I decided to continue taking the crazy train.
I lined my dehydrator panel with some parchment paper so I wouldn't lose any kernels and dehydrated them again at 105 degrees overnight again. SUCCESS! I ground the corn once again using my blender this time because it seems to do a better job than the processor. I got a nice meal that I used to make polenta for dinner. It made about 1 and 3/4 c of meal. I could also have used it to make cornbread, but I didn't. I'm still not a super fan of the consistency of polenta, but this polenta was truly delicious and it was really rewarding to know that I was able to do it. I may break down and buy the grain mill (yeah another gadget) knowing that I'll actually use it.
I just wanted to share because it made me feel accomplished. I think I'll just skip to step #2 next time and just start with mashed corn kernels. If you buy the corn I can always make you some meal.
1 Tbsp coarse salt
2 bay leaves
1 2/3 c coarse cornmeal (white or yellow; best if homemade)
1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
salt and pepper
Put 7 cups of cold water, salt, and bay leaves into a medium heavy bottomed pan. Stir in cornmeal.
Bring to a boil over high heat, then add oil. Reduce heat to medium-low and continue cooking, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, until polenta thickens and pulls away from the bottom and sides of pot, 30 to 40 min. Season with salt and pepper and remove the bay leaves.