Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Bite me: Corn and then some

Corn in Grenada is mainly harvested in August, therefore during rest of the year, there is an abundance of corn dishes to enjoy. Roasted corn on the cob is like a definite favorite. It's a popular street food that involves roasting an ear of corn, in its husk, over a coal-pot fire. Like with any roasted or barbecued food, personal preference is applied. Some love it black and crunchy (well done), others prefer golden grains that are lightly singed (rare). I'm more of a medium rare kinda girl, perfect balance. Of course be prepared for the yellow and black spangled smile that will follow you for the rest of the day.

Roasted Corn on the Cob

We have another winner in Coucou. This is made by cooking cornmeal in a variety of seasonings and ochro (Caribbean kid's broccoli) and allowing it to set in a casserole dish. Most times, it's served with callaloo and ochro, stewed fish or any dish with a tasty gravy. Leftovers can be fried for breakfast the next day. In China, my African friends introduced me to the mama of the family, Fufu. It is considered sacrilege to use anything but cornmeal, water and salt as other ingredients would get in the way of the flavours of the accompanying meat sauce. It is also fluffier in nature and more filling.

Local Coucou and Callaloo

Coucou's sweet variant is called Conkie. Cornmeal, pumpkin, coconut milk and spices are mixed and steamed in banana leaf packages.  Sweet potato and raisin are sometimes added for extra texture and flavour.

Conkie compliments NB Photography

My hearts beats for Asham. After the corn is removed from the cob, it is parched, ground and finally sweetened with white or brown sugar. Asham was the source of powdered faces and hands for many '80s kids, especially when the Feast of All Saints drew near. In Trinidad it is called Chilli Bibi and served in cones.

Asham compliments Reggaetreats.com

Corn is extremely versatile and cultures have found many ways to manipulate it. What do you do with corn in your country? Feel free to share below.