Cornmeal is a versatile ingredient to use in Fall cooking, adding a unique texture & flavor and a rustic element to various dishes, both sweet and savory! The type of cornmeal (fine, medium, or coarse) you use will affect the texture and end result of your recipes, so it's important to choose the right one for your specific dish. Here are some ways you can incorporate cornmeal into your fall recipes!
- Cornbread and Corn Muffins: Cornbread and corn muffins are classic fall treats. The slightly sweet and savory flavor of cornbread pairs well with fall dishes like chili, soups, & barbecue. You can even add some chopped jalapeños or grated cheese for an extra kick. Try our newest recipe from Executive Chef Josie Urbick from Skagit Landing Restaurant & Catering - Smoked Cheddar & Bacon Cornbread Muffins!
- Cornmeal Pancakes: Make your weekend brunch special by preparing cornmeal pancakes. Top them with maple syrup, fresh apples or pears, and a sprinkle of cinnamon for a delightful autumn twist.
- Polenta: Creamy polenta is a comforting side dish that complements hearty fall meals. Serve it alongside braised short ribs, roasted root vegetables, or mushroom ragout for a warm and satisfying dish.
- Cornmeal Mush: Similar to polenta and grits, cornmeal mush is made by cooking cornmeal with water or milk until it thickens. It can be sliced and fried or served with sweet toppings like syrup or sugar.
- Grits: In the Southern United States, cornmeal is used to make grits. Grits are a staple breakfast dish made by boiling coarsely ground cornmeal until it becomes creamy and thick. They are often served with butter, cheese, or shrimp.
- Cornmeal-Crusted Vegetables: Try coating fall vegetables like butternut squash, sweet potatoes, or Brussels sprouts in a cornmeal crust before roasting them. This will add a crispy texture and a pleasant corn flavor to your roasted veggies.
- Apple Cornmeal Cake: Combine cornmeal with apples for a delightful dessert. Make an apple cornmeal cake or a cornmeal crumble topping for apple crisps and pies. The combination of sweet and slightly nutty cornmeal complements the flavors of autumn fruits.
- Cornmeal Stuffing: Add cornmeal to your Thanksgiving stuffing recipe for added texture and a hint of corn flavor. It can be a unique twist on the traditional stuffing recipe.
- Cornmeal-Coated Fried Chicken: Make a comforting fall meal by coating chicken pieces in a seasoned cornmeal mixture and frying them until crispy and golden brown. Serve with mashed potatoes and gravy for a classic comfort food experience.
- Cornmeal-Crusted Fish: Incorporate cornmeal into your seafood dishes. Coat fish fillets with cornmeal and spices before pan-frying or baking for a crunchy and flavorful crust.
- Cornmeal Porridge: Warm up your mornings with a cozy bowl of cornmeal porridge. Sweeten it with maple syrup or honey and top it with fall fruits like pears, cranberries, or figs.
- Cornmeal-Crusted Apple Rings: Dip apple slices in a cornmeal batter and fry them for a delightful fall dessert or snack. Dust them with powdered sugar and cinnamon for extra flavor!
- Cornmeal Pizza Crust: Pro tip - Sprinkle Cornmeal on your pan/peel to prevent dough from sticking and it provides a lovely crunch.
Fun Facts about Cornmeal:
- Ingredient Composition: Cornmeal is made from ground corn (maize) kernels. It is produced by grinding dried corn, and the texture of the resulting meal can vary from fine to coarse, depending on the degree of grinding.
- Ancient Staple: Cornmeal, made from ground corn (maize), has been a dietary staple for centuries, particularly in Native American and Latin American cuisines. It played a vital role in early American diets.
- Versatile Ingredient: Cornmeal is incredibly versatile. It's used to make a wide range of dishes, including cornbread, polenta, tamales, and cornmeal mush.
- Different Textures: Cornmeal comes in various textures, from fine to coarse. The texture affects the outcome of dishes. Fine cornmeal is often used in baking, while coarser varieties are used for dishes like polenta.
- Cultural Significance: Cornmeal is culturally significant in many regions. For example, it's a key ingredient in Southern cuisine, where cornbread is a beloved and iconic dish.
Happy Fall Baking! 🍂
- The Fairhaven Mill Team