Saturday, September 20, 2014

Mealie Muffins for Sourdough Surprises

There are very few foods that I will not eat. Typically, when I dislike something, I may still try it (e.g, tofu). But when it comes to cornmeal, I just cannot do it. I don't even like the smell. Corn tortillas - no. Festival (a jamaican fried dough - flour, cornmeal, baking powder and sugar) -only when I am extremely homesick. Cornmeal porridge - are you trying to kill me? But I LOVE corn. I could eat a pound of corn kernels in one sitting. Roasted. Boiled. Raw. Love it all. But once it has been turned into cornmeal, I run the other way. 

So I was a bit distressed when Sourdough Surprises announced cornbread for this month. I did not want to sit the month out. But how would I get around the cornmeal? Should I just make it and have others taste it? That could take a while.Should I try to figure out the ratio of cornmeal to flour that I would like? I recently added Jiffy cornbread mix to a few loaves of bread. And after the initial whiff of cornmeal when they were just out the oven, it was fine.  Then I remembered mealie bread. 

Mealie bread is a type of corn bread made in southern Africa. It's made with corn kernels (mealie) instead of cornmeal. I saw several versions - some with and without wheat flour. Some steam the mixture in much the same way that Jamaicans make cornmeal pudding. I opted to use flour and to bake it. I then crossed by fingers and hoped that I would like it. 

Fresh out the oven, these were delicious! I didn't blend all the corn and enjoyed biting into a few kernels here and there. They were light and wonderful with butter. I had to stop myself from eating the entire batch all at once. But then they cooled. And there was that unmistakable cornmeal smell. It's weird how my beloved corn transforms like that. Ah well, this just means that I will have to warm or toast these delicious muffins before I bite in. I can live with that. 

Sourdough Mealie Bread


1 cup of flour 
2 tablespoons sugar
2 teaspoons of baking powder
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes (optional)
1/2 teaspoon of salt
2 eggs
1 1/2 cups corn, divided 
2 tablespoons oil or melted butter 
1/2 cup 166% sourdough starter


Preheat oven to 350 F. Thoroughly grease 8 wells of a muffin pan. 

Whisk together flour, sugar, baking powder, red pepper flakes (if using) and salt. Blend eggs,oil and 1 cup of corn until smooth. Add the remaining half cup of corn and the starter. Pulse for a few seconds. You want some larger pieces to remain. You could also leave the kernels whole or completely blend everything. 

Pour mixture into the dry ingredients and gently stir until just combined. 

Divide evenly among 8 muffin wells. 

Bake for 15 minutes. 



  1. Never heard of mealie muffins, they sound yummy. Thanks for putting aside your distaste of corn meal to bring them to us!

    1. I learned about them last year. Glad that I could share.

  2. Funny how food aversions work, isn't it? I'm glad you were able to find a way to participate this month. The muffins look gorgeous!

    1. I know! I'm really trying to figure this one out and kick it but it's difficult

  3. What a great job adapting the challenge to make it work for you! I hope that toasting them gives them that fresh-from the oven flavor again :) Great job!

    1. Toasting worked on day 2 but by day 3, the cornmeal smell was too strong for me.

  4. I am so glad you found a way to join us this month! Your mealie muffins look and sound great! :)

  5. I never heard of mealie bread before, such an inventive way to make bread! Your muffins look delicious

  6. Good for you for finding a way to participate. Your mealie muffins look really good. I like the idea of having bits of corn in them.