Results tagged “corn”

Corn's domestication of the human race

Smbobscorn0001.jpgZea mays, the giant tropical grass commonly known as corn or maize, now totally dominates both American agriculture and the American diet.  93.6 million acres of US soil is given over to its production (imagine a cornfield bigger than Germany), and of the 45,000 or so different products in the average American supermarket, over one quarter contain corn.  Why has corn been so successful in domesticating us?  The answer involves sex, drugs and very complicated US government farm policy…


When visiting Libby, Tim, Ollie and Abi in Seattle a few months ago we had this in a Bolivian restaurant and found ourselves ordering more and more.  I recreated the recipe, and the home-made huminta was a hit with all of the original dining party, especially the littlest members. 

SmAbihuminta0001.jpg‘Huminta’ may mean something different to most South Americans, but here is the Copacabana Restaurant version.  For a hot, savoury, sweet, buttery side dish, you can’t go too wrong with this.

This recipe's for Abi (aged 1 year and 10 months), who was an enthusiastic guinea-pig during recipe testing.  Her dad calls them 'fairy cakes on acid'. You'll have to try them to see if you agree.

Corn and courgette soup

This soup might sound too plain and simple to be very interesting, but it is very delicious.  It is the first soup I was asked to make at Chez Panisse, and I've made it several times since at work and at home.  (It was not the soup that ended up in the compost, so you can trust me on this one.)  It is creamy, sweet and delicious.  The trick is to get a good balance between corny and courgettey flavours.  You might be tempted to substitute tinned corn for cobs, but please don’t.

Smbobscorn0001.jpgWe are still getting corn here, but I guess the season may have ended in the UK - ?  Judging by the Halloween decorations ALREADY out on our neighbours' houses, it must be 'fall', so I guess recipes will be moving over to the celeriac/potato/roast meat variety quite soon.  I'm going to have to send you one more corn recipe first though, as there are just too many important corn facts I feel compelled to write up.  For instance, did you know that one quarter of the c.45,000 products sold in the average American supermarket contain corn?  Find out more about corn's domestication of the human race next week...


Culinary Anthropologist