Sunday, August 14, 2011

Making Hominy I

First attempt and it seems
to be starting to become hominy.
I'm giving making hominy a try. I almost feel deprived growing up in the South and not having had any relatives that made it. Alas, I didn't; therefore, I'm having to do research on the internet. I've found quite a few recipes for making it with lye or potash. Lye seems to be something that is rare in stores around here. I remember buying it once for soap making, but Uncle Charles says they don't sell it anymore. Likely I could get it online. Nor do I think in this heat I want to start a fire and putz around making woodash/potash lye.

There are relatively fewer recipes on the internet for making hominy with lime, but in my search I stumbled across another method for making it using baking soda, which they claim was done a lot in the South. Since I've been making lime pickles and have a lot of pickling lime on hand, I'm going to start off using that.

Searching on the internet has led me to a lot of interesting sites and much more chemistry than I really want to remember. I had more success searching on nixtamal or nixtimalization, which is the name of the process of making hominy, and the Mexican word for it. They are the ones, ya know, who invented the process. However, here are some links to various sites I thought were helpful or just plain interesting.

To start off, this page has an excellent explanation of Nixtamalization:

This video of CIA Chef Instructor Illiana de la Vega demonstrating the traditional Mexican method of making hominy to use for masa for tortillas was extremely interesting. The recipe she uses is very similar to the one I'm going to use. Since I'm making hominy for eating rather than nixtamal for masa I'm using a different recipe. I may give de la Vega's recipe a try though just to see what is different.

This guy, Daniel Delaney, is very articulate and fun to watch. I'd like to explore more of his videos in his WTF (What's This Food) series. If you veer off on his Pimento Cheese video, though, he makes one of the classiest upscale pimento cheeses I've ever seen, and it comes nowhere near the stuff I grew up eating as comfort food. His video on What Is Hominy/How to Make Pozole is quite interesting with the history and descriptions. However, it's actually about making the Mexican soup/stew that is called Pozole/Posole rather on actually making hominy. His recipe looked pretty good, and posole the Mexican soup is one of the reasons I wanted to learn how to make hominy in the first place.

There's a very interesting thread on the PaleoPlanet forum with good instructions on making hominy using wood ash. PaleoPlanet is a lot of fun to surf on - you find people who enjoy doing things primitive - knapping knives, arrowheads, etc.; cooking over a fire, and other stuff.

Here is the link to the page with the recipe that I'm using:

Here is a link to a recipe using 1 quart corn, 2 quarts water, and 2 tablespoons of baking soda.

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