A Sweet Pudding of Indian Corn
By Kathleen Curtin, Sandra L. Oliver, and Plimoth Plantation
Giving Thanks: Thanksgiving Recipes and History, from Pilgrims to Pumpkin Pie
In New England, native corn made its way into many dishes that had formerly been made with English "corns" like oats, wheat, and rice. Adaptations of English porridge and rice pudding recipes were particularly well suited to maize. This particular corn dish is sweetened with sugar and enriched with milk. The variation given at the end is a more deluxe version based on 17th-century rice pudding recipes.
• 6 cups water
• 1/4 teaspoon salt
• 2 cups very coarse grits (Gonsalves brand is best)
• 1 cup milk
• 2 tablespoons sugar (or more to taste)
Bring water to a boil in a large saucepan. Stir in the salt and the coarse grits, stirring until the contents of the pot return to a boil. Turn the heat to low, and cook very gently for 10 minutes, stirring frequently. Be sure to stir across the bottom of the pot to keep the grits from sticking.
Remove from the heat and allow to stand about a half hour or until the grits are tender. Stir in the milk and sugar (and any desired optional spices).
Variation—To make a more deluxe version, you can use cream in place of milk, add sweet spices to taste (like cinnamon, nutmeg, mace, cloves, or ginger) and 1/2 cup of currants or raisins.