Maize in Cooking
Maize is the type of corn grown in the Americas. It is also known as corn and has many uses in cooking. It is a staple food in many countries of the world where it is eaten as cornmeal. This is flour that is made from dried corn and is yellow in color. The husk and germ of the maize kernel are removed and this can be stored indefinitely when placed in an airtight container. Cornflour is another type of flour that can be made from corn and is white in color. In this type of flour the dried corn is ground to a fine white powder and is used as a thickening agent in sauces. It is also known as cornstarch.
Corn on the cob is a delicious meal on its own or with other foods. It is commonly served with barbecued food. You remove the leaves and scrub the cob before placing it in boiling water. It doesn’t take long to cook – perhaps about 15 minutes. Then you butter the corn and start eating. To eat this, you hold the cob with both hands and bite off pieces of then corn. You can also but small handles for each end of the cob because it is hot to touch when it is first cooked. It is messy because you get the butter all over your face, so you need to have a napkin handy.
Cornmeal is also used to make cornbread. Tortillas also use this kind of flour. Shortbread cookies are made from a combination of cornstarch, regular flour and butter. Hominy is another food made from maize. In this traditional US food, dried corn is soaked in lye water to remove the hulls. In Mexican recipes, the dried corn is cooked in lime water. The hominy can then be used to make soup, stews, or ground into fine dough to make tamales. A very popular cereal, corn flakes, comes from cooking corn grits in steam pressure cookers. They are then dried, squeezed flat and sprayed with vitamins and minerals.