Corn + ash

2023-05-29Johnny Ortiz

¬ Corn mother is a staple food of the desert southwest, and is a food we who grew up here hold close to our hearts. Where I spent my youth at Taos Pueblo it seems everyone eats some version of atole ( corn porridge ) for breakfast. I like mine made with cedar ash, blue corn, raw honey, grass-fed unpasteurized butter or bear fat, and a little desert lakebed salt.

The Comanche people would travel north from the plains with bison hides and meat and trade with my people of Taos Pueblo for their corn. The Comanches knew they needed carbohydrates, which help with hydration and living in the desert southwest. Since they were nomadic and couldn’t grow crops of their own they would seek it out from pueblo people who had given into Spanish control and were safe to grow crops.

In modern day, the addition of ash is rare to find in food containing corn, but is a tradition that goes back centuries. When you cook corn in ash, or...

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