Updated: Apr 1, 2021
Marietta B. Pangan (REKADOS/TMI)
Using corn as the inspiration came from my fondness of fresh corn on the cob and my recent revisit to Taber, the Corn Capital of Alberta. I felt that I should include CORN as the REKADO (The Main Ingredient) to end the season on a high note.
Corn is produced on every continent of the world, except for Antarctica. Corn has a variety of uses. It can be made into breakfast cereal, bread, snack foods, oil and corn syrup. It is also used to make bourbon or whisky. It is a source of ethanol for fuel and is used to make plastic and fabrics. In agriculture, corn is used as fish bait and livestock feed.
Photo: Marietta Pangan
Corn is as essential today to mankind as it was in the beginning to native people. According to Indian legend, corn was of divine origin – “it was the food of the gods that created the earth.” It is believed that corn dates back even further than the inhabitance of native people. Its origin is believed to be in the Mexican plateau or the highlands of Guatemala. Fossil pollen grains of corn have been found in drill cores of lake sediment beneath Mexico City. These sediments could be 80,000 years old or more.
Corn belongs to the grass family. Theory suggests that at one time, each individual kernel was covered by its own floral parts similar to the grains of oats and barley and that the cob readily broke down into small segments. It is believed that this has allowed corn as a species to survive. As we know them today, the husk and cob were gradually developed from wild varieties by the native population.
The Native American name for corn was mahiz, which the early settlers called maize. In Native American language usage, the word “mahiz” means “that which sustains us.” Cultivating corn is responsible for turning the Native American tribes from nomadic to agrarian societies. They may have even used corn to brew beer before the European settlers arrived.
1 large or 2 small eggs
1/2 cup milk
2 cups whole wheat flour
2 cups fresh or canned corn kernels, drained
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/3 teaspoon pepper
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 tablespoon butter or margarine
Deep fat cooking oil
Maple syrup (optional)
Beat eggs, and stir in flour and milk.
Add remaining ingredients, and blend.
Spoon heaping tablespoons of batter into hot, 375° F cooking oil, and cook until browned, turning once.
Drain on paper towelling, and serve hot with maple syrup, if desired.
Yield: 6-8 servings
CORN CHOWDER (Suwam na Mais)
1 tbsp. corn oil
1 medium-size onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, chopped
1 pound cured pork (Tocino), diced
5 pieces fresh corn, removed from the cob
½ cup long beans (Sitaw)
½ cup zucchini
1 tbsp spicy shrimp paste ( bagoong)
2 cups broth
pepper to taste
Saute onion in a medium saucepan. Add garlic
Add pork and simmer for 1 minute.
Add corn and simmer for 5 minutes or until corn is tender.
Pour stock and shrimp paste and pepper.
Add vegetables and simmer 2 minutes
Yield: 4-6 servings
1/2 cup soft margarine, melted
Pre-heat oven to 400°
In a medium bowl mix together the dry ingredients.
Stir together the milk (I warm in the microwave for 1 minute), melted margarine, honey (oil your measuring cup, the honey will slide out) and eggs.
Mix into the dry ingredients, only until fully moistened.
Pour into greased 9×9 square baking pan.
Bake 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.
Yield: 16 servings
CORN & MANGO SALSA
1 ½ corn kernels
1 mango, sliced and diced
1 ripe tomato, seeded and diced
1/2 small cucumber, seeded and diced
1/2 small red pepper, diced
1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and minced
2 tablespoons cilantro, chopped
Olive oil, to taste
Lime juice, salt and pepper to taste
In a medium bowl mix all ingredients except oil and lime juice.
Add oil and lime juice just before serving.
Yield: 6 servings
CORN PUDDING SUPREME (Maja Mais)
2 cups thin coconut milk
2 cups evaporated milk
1 cup condensed milk
1 can ( 170grms) all-purpose cream
1 cup cornstarch
2 cups corn kernel
1 jar sweet coconut strings (macapuno
toasted desiccated coconut for toppings
In a large pan, pour thin coconut milk and corn. Simmer until corn is tender.
Add condensed milk, cream and coconut strings.
In a bowl, dissolve cornstarch in evaporated milk and pour over pan.
Simmer at very low heat, stirring constantly
Just before it is totally set, pour into serving dishes and refrigerate until set.
Yield: 12 servings
CREAMY CORN DRINK
500grams corn kernels
3 cups evaporated milk
½ cup condensed milk
4 3″-long cinnamon sticks
Salt to taste
Add corn, evaporated and condensed milk, and salt to a blender and puree until smooth.
Heat in a saucepan until warm.
Serve in mugs with cinnamon sticks.
Yield: 4 servings