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The Many Uses of Corn

The Garifunas tease the Mestizos because they do not know the many dishes with green plantain. But similarly the Mestizos can tease the Garifunas for missing out on the uses of corn.

After the corn is cooked and grounded and made into dough, the first thing you can think about is baking corn tortillas. But that is not all. That dough can be mixed with recado and other condiments to make a thick gravy soup-like dish with chicken popularly known as “Col”. That same dough with recado is the ingredient for the tamales, also known as Col, of course corn is the main base used to wrap up the tamales.

Let’s change the pace. That same dough is cooked some more, a little more water, some condensed milk, evaporated milk and sugar and there you have a porridge or delicious drink known as “Atole”. It is best when served warm but can certainly be enjoyed with some ice.

Let’s change the pace again. You do not have to cook, grind and make a dough. Simply boil the corn on the cob and enjoy corn on the cob with some lime and salt or with some mayonnaise or as it is. And when the corn is still young and tender you can grind and make a similar dish to the tamales except that it is wrapped in the corn skins and boiled, and now called “Dukunú”. Belizeans enjoy tamales and Dukunú all over. Dukunú goes well with or without chicken.

Gotchya, just when you thought it’s over! You roast some corn ‘till it is dark brown almost black and you grind it. Then you proceed to brew it like you would brew some coffee. Your result is a delicious beverage we used to call 25 years ago “Corn Coffee”. Try it; it’s delicious. The same ground corn into a fine powder and you add some sugar and you have a splendid candy called “Casham”. And theirs is more, you know? See Ya next issue.

– by Angel Nuñez, Columnist

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