“A light wind swept over the corn, and all nature laughed in the sunshine.” ~ Anne Brontë
Study: Corn, also known as maize
Analysis: Corn belongs to the family Poaceae, or grass family. Unlike most fruits and veggies, corn can cross-pollinate within the current growing season, causing the production of ears with mixed kernels!
Back in the Day: Indigenous Mexicans and Americans relied for thousands of years on the The Three Sisters planting method while cultivating crops of corn, and often processed it with hardwood ash and lime. This technique, called nixtamalization, increases the bioavailability of protein, vitamin B, and niacin within the corn.
Today corn is one of the most highly consumed foods in the world, but unfortunately it largely exists in the forms of genetically modified corn starch, high fructose corn syrup, and animal feed.
Geographical Roots: Corn is believed to have been domesticated by the indigenous people of southern Mexico over 10,000 years ago. Once domesticated, corn spread rapidly across the Americas as a truly nutritional food source. It was revered for its versatility and ability to be stored for long periods of time, and seed was easily saved for migration and future crops.
Why It’s a Gem: It’s so versatile! We can’t resist an ear of homegrown, organic corn – it’s instantly summertime upon biting into a juicy, sweet cob. Corn can be dried, the kernels plucked from their ears, and stored for many months. Ground into masa, it also makes hearty, delicious tortillas. Below you’ll find recipes that highlight the many flavors of our favorite summertime harvest!
Here are some of our favorite recipes:
How To Make Corn Tortillas From Scratch in 5 Minutes from Maria Rodale’s Farm Country Kitchen, Cooking Up Trouble, Dishing Out Advice
Corn + Goat Cheese Pizza from Sprouted Kitchen
Pulled Chicken Guacamole Sliders With Corn Pico from How Sweet It Is
Want to make your own masa for tortillas? Our marketer, Jessica, recently learned the process of nixtamaliation using this method at Wild Willow Farm and Education Center and can’t stop talking about it!