Monday, May 5, 2008

Gratitude Monday – Things To Do With Cornmeal

Not as good as they look.

I discovered recently that I have a great deal of cornmeal in my cupboard. It was the result of a relative volunteering at the local Food Bank. We were blessed with many items including three bags of cornmeal containing 500 grams (just over one lb.) each. A little cornmeal goes a long way.
I rearranged the cupboards recently and discovered this blessing and as I did wondered how I’d use it. Then I turned over one of the bags and found two recipes, one for corn bread and one for tortillas.
Made them both and liked them. And best of all each recipe called for a cup of cornmeal.
Then yesterday I was looking for something to ignore in a cookbook and found a recipe for cornmeal cookies.
They looked interesting and easy as they need only butter, cornmeal, sugar.
I thought they were worth a try, but was skeptical so only made half the batch.
I threw them together quickly. I use a combination of tahini (sesame paste) and coconut oil as a butter substitute. It’s tasty, but it does change the consistency of the product. I make allowances for that during the tasting cycle.
Yesterday’s cookie experiment did not work out. They’re like eating crispy, greasy sugar. I suspect if made properly they’d be fine.
I am grateful to have found the recipe. I’ve asked for ways to use the cornmeal before it goes stale and I’m grateful to have found them. I’m happy to have tried this and grateful that it’s something I’ll likely never have to make again.


Update - The Original Corn Cookie Recipe

Because Bunnygirl asked for it, here’s the recipe I used as the basis for the unfortunate cornmeal cookie incident.

Pastitas de Maiz (Cornmeal Cookies)
1/2 pound butter
1 cup sugar
1 cup cornmeal

Preheat oven to 300 degrees.
Cream the butter and sugar together and then mix in the corn meal.
Shape into walnut-sized balls and put on the cookie sheet with an inch of space between each cookie ball.
Bake for 20 minutes, or until delicately browned.
It makes about three dozen.

Recipe from The Art of South American Cookery p.251 by Myra Waldo (Book Club Edition) published by Doubleday & Company, Inc. Garden City, New York, copyright 1961 by Myra Waldo Schwartz.


Crabby McSlacker said...

Am I the only one who thinks "crispy greasy sugar" sounds pretty damn tasty?

Good for you for experimenting and not wasting food. A lesser person might have chucked it.

Leah J. Utas said...

Thanks, Crabby. It may sound good, but the reality is a whole different bag of crunchies.

the Bag Lady said...

dfLeah - this post cracked me up! Only you would turn this around into something to be grateful for!!

I'm grateful that you were magnanimous (is that a word?) to share this with us!

Leah J. Utas said...

Gratitude is where you find it, dfBag Lady. If you turn something over and tickle its tummy enough you can be grateful for just about anything.
I'm happy to share.

bunnygirl said...

So what's the original recipe? Share! I've got cornmeal and I'm game to try!

Leah J. Utas said...

I will, Bunnygirl. I'll get to it shortly. Thanks for asking.

Terrie Farley Moran said...

df Leah,

You are amazing! You find a reason for gratitude in everything. When I grow up I want to be just like you!


Leah J. Utas said...

dfTerrie - What a lovely thing to say. Thanks.

Reb said...

I like cornbread and tortillas! I can't imagine the cookies though.

Tortillas freeze well if they are still soft. Just make sure when you thaw them, you take them out of the plastic and wrap them in paper towel to absorb the water as it comes out otherwise you get a soggy spot and that bakes or fries harder than the rest.

Good post.

Leah J. Utas said...

Thanks for the thawing tip, Reb. I didn't know that.
You're better off not imagining the cookies.

Hilary said...

"I was looking for something to ignore"

I absolutely laughed out loud when I read that line. Wonderful!

Frank Baron said...

I don't understand.

You said "crispy, greasy sugar" like it was a bad thing....

Leah J. Utas said...

Glad I made you laugh, Hilary.

Oh, in this case, Frank, it is.

david mcmahon said...

I could be persuaded to try this recipe!

Dawn said...

Crispy greasy sugar! I'm in!

Leah J. Utas said...

David, if you do try it, stop by and let me know what you think.

Dawn, I know it sounds good, but the reality is an entirely different tale.