We use the same machines all round the village, going from field to field loading the wagons, then one by one we get our corn dryers filled. The men work together with several tractors pulling all the different machines needed to do the job. It’s very exciting and a good crop like this means we don’t have to spend money buying in expensive feed for our animals.
We use the corn for feeding our pigs, sheep, goats and poultry and the local wild birds do very well on it too ! We also swop the corn for other cereals like barley and wheat with our neighbours.
We give the whole cobs to the goats and pigs and they have to work to nibble the corn off. We have a hand machine to grain the corn for our sheep and poultry and we’ve a neighbour with an electric machine who’ll do a load for us when we visit him.
I’ve gathered in most of my Indian sweet corn which I planted in the potager, it’s a good crop too although about eight of the cobs were attacked by a mushroom and disfigured. In France this is considered a “maladie” called “Charbon” and the corn is worthless. I was really disappointed and showed the corn to my Flickr friend Podchef (Now there’s a man who can cook!) and he suggested that it was a highly prized delicacy in Mexico called Huitlacoche !
Mexican Corn Truffle
Huitlacoche (also spelled cuitlacoche) is a fungus which grows naturally on ears of corn (Ustilago maydis). The fungus is harvested and treated as a delicacy. The earthy and somewhat smoky fungus is used to flavor quesadillas, tamales, soups and other specialty dishes.
Fortunately, I didn’t give Peggy all the “damaged” cobs, so I’m going to try cooking with the Hiutlacoche and see how it tastes. Fabrice will never eat it – I just know…
Here are the four cob colours I got from last year’s saved seeds and I want to keep as many as I can of the best from this year for planting on a bigger patch next year.