My corn crop was destroyed by birds this past summer. It was coming in strong, 6 feet tall with a wonderful showing of several cobs on each plant in mid July. The bed I set wasn’t large, about 25 feet wide and 40 feet long. Then, late in the month a freak hurricane named Hanna ran up the Mississippi River and turned right mid way through the country, we were hit with its tail end. Just enough force to mess with my corn, twisting it up and opening the tightly packed rows. This in turn provided the birds access to each Cob which are generally buried tightly in the mass of plants that I refer to as my wall of Oaxacan green “Indian corn”. The birds ate all of my corn this year, it was hard to watch nature take her share.
For the past several years a fall harvest has produced enough corn to dry, removing from the plants in early October, then shucking the semi-dried corn to finish drying on sheet pans in the sun over a week or 2. The next step is to store the dried kernels in jars and then grind them in the food processor as needed for this corn bread recipe.
I’ve found that a harvest of 4-5 gallons of kernels provides enough cornmeal for us to make cornbread on weekends to feature as “Migas” on our weekend brunch menu for the winter.
The Migas at Estia’s Little Kitchen are actually cornbread French toast served in a pool of tomatillo salsa with adobo pork and French toast. I named the dish Muggsy’s Migas in honor of my pal Muggsy (chef Andrew Mahoney) who expresses great enthusiasm for every experience he has at Estia, especially the Migas.
This year we will be buying corn meal from our friends at the Foster farm. When Suzanna, the market manager at Foster’s “Sagaponack Potato Co.” called and asked which of three varieties I wanted, I asked her to blend them. The blend is beautiful.
Cornbread for Migas:
Makes 2 – 8 inch round loaves
- 1 cup melted butter
- 1/2 cup agave syrup
- 1 cup sour cream
- 1/2 cup whole milk
- 1 cup sweet corn
- 2 cups cornmeal
- 1 1/2 cups ap flour
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 1/2 tablespoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
Start combining all wet ingredients and set aside to come to room temperature.
Then combine dry ingredients. Pre heat oven to 350°. Combine all ingredients with a fork. Rub your baking dishes with butter.
Fill greased baking pans with batter and place in hot oven, bake for 40 minutes. Test with a tooth pick in the center, if dry remove from oven and cool before slicing.