Chilebrown at home

Monday, October 28, 2019


Last summer I visited David Yelowhorse on the Navajo Nation in New Mexico. I picked up a native food item that I had never heard of or experienced. This product in the Navajo tongue is called Neeshjjizhii. (Dried Steam Corn) What actualy is Neeshjizhii? Here is a description that I have cut and pasted from the World Wide Web.

To prepare Navajo steamed corn, one must build a fire in an adobe oven and have it heated throughout the day. Clean out the ashes and place the ears of the corn, including the husk. Pour ½-of-a-bucket of water into the oven. Seal the oven with mud and a rock. Let the corn steam in the oven all night. In the morning scrape the kernels off the ear and dry in the sun. Dried corn can be used in many different dishes once it is prepared. The most popular dish is hominy stew

 Finding a recipe to use this dried corn was not so easy. I asked the Navajo Indian who I bought the grain and he basically said boil it for hours. I did some research and this recipe was confirmed. I opted to use a crock pot and added some water, vegetables, pork, salt & pepper and bacon later in the cook. I cooked it on low heat. When you take the the grain out of the bag it has a slight smoky aroma and this smell was reinforced throughout the cook.

I served my Dried Steam Corn in a small bowl as an accompaniment to my meal. It still had texture but was soft tot he bite after a 10 hour cook. I would compare the flavor and texture to hominy with a smoky component. I am glad I added the vegetables and pork to add a little more flavor. There was a wonderful corn flavor with the added bonus of smoke. This was a comforting and filling dish. One fun thing was this dish brought back memories of my Navajo Nation visit last summer.


Unknown said...

Can we purchase your steamed corn online?

Unknown said...

How to purchase online?

Chilebrown said...

Dear Unknown, The answer in Unknown. If you enlarge first image there is contact information.