Saturday, October 3, 2009

More on Corn Meal

The dried corn harvest is now and nearly complete. This means that the 2009 corn meal selection will be available from here on out....until it sells out. Be creative, colorful, plan some special uses for the holidays or just incorporate locally grown corn flour into your daily and weekly uses. Access to such a fresh and sweet product like this is not so common, take advantage and tell your friends!

Here are just some of the harvest bins full of dried corn. In the background are the Hopi Blue flour corn, quite a successful crop this season. There is more blue corn than last season and the quality is near perfection. See, there are many moments of success in farming! In the foreground on the left is Hopi Pink. Proving less perfect than the blue variety, Wayne admitted to having to sort through this one a bit. The kernels often did not come out as pink as one might hope and a lot of white was mixed in, washing out the beautiful colors that the variety had been selected for. On the right are many of those cobs that had cross bred or come out with inconsistency.

Note how the blue kernels somehow cross-bred their way into this (I think it was supposed to be Hopi Pink) cob. Perhaps images like this will make you think about what your corn meal looked like prior to processing...cross breeding colors like this may or may not produce an aesthetically pleasing flour for a consumer. Ah, more of the trials a farmer faces.

Here is the Hopi Pink, after sorting out the less pink colored cobs that slipped in. It ought to be beautiful to work corn muffins and bread, pink grits, why not? It would be nice to wait until Valentine's Day for an occasion like this, but I predict this color will not make it to February before being sold out for the season.

On the other hand, there is a lot of Hopi Blue it seems. That is a good thing because it proved to be a great corn meal last season. I have memories of the toasty brown crust on the outside of a blue muffin with chile flakes inside that Lee made last winter. Notice the size of these cobs. Notice how uniform the kernels grew. Wayne was showing me a technique of counting the rows of kernels that the field manager, Pablo, uses to judge a great cob of corn.

Finally, here is the Oaxacan Green. It is simply blue and yellow makes basic as learning your primary colors. I'm looking forward to observing this one post-milling in it's green flour form. It also leaves me inspired to mix blue and pink to make purple. Why not?

This harvest season at Tierra you may find corn meal in a grand variety of colors (variety is unavoidable at this farm) from yellow to blue to pink to green and whatever you might mix and create in between. Enjoy!

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