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Kiss My Grits, or at least eat them

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* In the kitchen

It's been a Halloween tradition that I bring my Posole/Fish stew to Sonoma and set up a home base at my pals Maureen and Mike's house while the kiddies go out trick or treating. Halloween isn't my favorite holiday but with good food and wine (Mike works for Gloria Ferrer, who in addition to their more famous sparkling wines make an underrated chardonnay), it's a lot of fun. This year I made far too much posole and have been experimenting ever since. The most successful has been this breakfast treat. Nov2006091 Puree leftover cooked hominy in a mini-food processor with just enough milk to help the blades move. When smooth, saute in a little fat (I used some rendered chicken fat but any kind of oil would be fine) and then add a handful of grated jack cheese and some chopped cilantro. Salt and pepper the corn (now technically grits) and spread over a plate. Top with warmed beans with their pot liquor and follow with a dusting of dry cheese like Parmesan or cotija. I need to clear up some things. Up until recently, a martini was a gin drink served strained into a chilled cocktail glass. Now it apparently is any kind of cocktail with ingredients ranging from chocolate to apples. Grits used to mean ground hominy. Hominy is corn with the skins removed. Ground whole kernel corn with the skins used to be called mush here and polenta in Italy. Now it would seem that any ground corn can be grits. Nov2006096 At Rancho Gordo, we sell prepared Hominy, which is corn that's had the skin removed and then dried. You soak and simmer and then the individual kernels "flower" open. You can also buy hominy canned but there is a gumminess and rubber quality that the canning process adds. You can also buy whole dry corn, soak it in CaL, rub the skins off and then simmer until cooked. This is the traditional method for making pozole in Mexico.


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