Mark Gaier and Clark Frasier
Hominy is corn preserved with lye, made from an old cooking technique used to preserve and bring dried corn back to life. The Cherokees made hominy grits by soaking corn in a weak lye solution and beating it with a corn beater called a kanona. Hulled corn is a favorite old New England dish made from yellow corn while hominy is made from white corn. Elderly New Englanders may still tell stories of peddlers who used to sell hulled corn and horseradish. Today hominy can be purchased in two forms — hulled and ready to cook, or in tins ready to just heat and serve. Either is an excellent change from potatoes. You can find it in the supermarket in tins, almost always in the Mexican food section. We've included it in this updated fish stew.
Yield: 6 servings
21/2 cups hominy
2 large egg yolks, lightly beaten
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon sweet paprika
1 teaspoon baking powder
2 egg whites
1/2 cup canola oil, divided
6 (6-ounce) cod fillets
6 strips thick-cut smoked bacon
2 tablespoon canola oil
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
For the hominy: Combine the hominy, egg yolks, flour, sugar, salt, pepper, paprika and baking powder in a bowl and mix. In another bowl, beat the egg whites to stiff peaks. Gently fold the egg whites into the hominy mixture. Heat 1/4 cup of the canola oil in a nonstick saute pan. Spoon one-sixth of the hominy into the pan, flipping the cake when golden brown and firm to the touch on one side, about 1 minute per side. Cook the remaining hominy cakes, adding more canola oil when needed. Place the cakes on a cookie sheet while making the entire batch.
For the cod: Wrap each piece of cod in a slice of bacon. Heat the canola oil in a large nonstick saute pan over medium heat. Add the butter and when melted and foaming, add the cod. Saute until the bacon is lightly crisp and the cod is cooked through, about 5 minutes on each side. Place one hominy cake on each plate and top with the bacon-wrapped cod. Serve.
From Maine Classics: More Than 150 Delicious Recipes from Down East by Mark Gaier and Clark Frasier. Copyright 2011 Mark Gaier and Clark Frasier. Reprinted by permission of Running Press.