Monday, July 6, 2009

My Grandpa's Cornmeal Mush

Most people I talk to don't know what mush is. My daughter said it sounds like something you'd get fed if you were in prison. And I think she's right. It's cheap, filling and easy to make, so I'm certain it would make a fine staple in any one of our penitentiaries.

I was introduced to mush (or as we called it "moosh") as a child by my Mexican grandfather. Mush is normally a breakfast food, but not with grandpa. He whipped it up for us three girls for dinner whenever he babysat us and we loved it.

Recently, when I was reading the 3-year-old this book...

...I was reminded of mush, as it is one of the items bid good night in the book. I fondly remembered the days of my childhood, over 25 years ago, when my sisters and I would visit my grandparents and shout for joy once he announced we would be having "moosh" for dinner. As I thought back on these times, I realized that this was a food I needed to introduce my own children to. I googled a recipe, found one at Hillbilly Housewife, and, like my grandfather before me, whipped up a batch for dinner, not breakfast.

In case you aren't familiar with mush, many people like to eat it just like you would oatmeal, with a pat of butter, milk, a teapsoon of sugar and cinnamon. The final product is much like cream of wheat, in taste and texture and it is delicious! For a good old-fashioned treat, try it!

Cornmeal Mush

1 cup cornmeal
1 cup cold tap water
1 teaspoon salt
3 cups hot tap water

In a small bowl, combine the cornmeal and cold tap water. Meanwhile, in a 2 quart pan, combine the salt and hot water. Bring it to a boil over high heat. While the water is heating, add the cornmeal mixed with the cold water. Combining the cornmeal with cool water before adding it to the boiling water keeps the cornmeal from lumping up when it hits the hot water. When the water and cornmeal boil, reduce the heat to low. Allow the mush to simmer for about 10 minutes, or until it is nicely thickened.

Note: Sometimes, when the mush begins to boil, large, volcano-like bubbles form and splatter uncontrollably. For this reason, it is wise to have the pot lid ready to cover the mush in order to prevent minor burns. On that note....enjoy!

I am pleased to list this post @ Biblical Womanhood's "Frugal Friday". Check out her blog for TONS for great money-saving tips!
I am also pleased to list this post at...
-Kelly's "Real Food Wednesday",
-Tip Junkie's "Talk to me Tuesday",
-5 Minutes for Mom's "Tackle It Tuesday",
-Tammy's Recipe's "Kitchen Tip Tuesday",
-Blessed With Grace's "Tempt My Tummy Tuesday",
-Mary's "Tightwad Tuesday",
-Jen's "Tasty Tuesday" and
-The Lazy Organizer's "Talk About Tuesday".

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The Desperate Cook said...

My mom used to make us cornmeal mush. She would also make something out of cornmeal that she fried.

I am having a Christmas in July Giveaway if you are interested

akawest said...

My mom also served mush. We ate ours with syrup. Sadly, this was not a hit with my family, but I still like it.

Carol said...

I still fix a hot cereal combination for me, 9grain, cornmeal, cream of wheat, oatmeal, toasted walnuts and raisins. My hubby said he had enough of it growing up. Thanks for sharing, you brought back memories! My mom use to put ice cream on our oatmeal once in a while for a treat!

Dianna said...

That's funny! My son recently asked for some mush after reading this book. Of course I made him some.

Lisa@BlessedwithGrace said...

Thanks for sharing your recipe and joining us for the TMTT anniversary today.

Brenda said...

I don't think I have ever had cornmeal mush, but it looks tasty.

Anonymous said...

I have never tried mush before but it looks like something I would like. Thanks for sharing recipe.

Stacy @ Completely Edible said...

When I was a kid, I called any hot cereal mush. Oatmeal, cream of wheat, cornmeal mush, grits, malt o meal, it was all mush. I was obsessed with it. I loved it so much! When I played in the sandbox, I didn't make mud pies, I made mud mush! :) Thanks for the recipe and trip down memory lane!

Anonymous said...

Oh, this looks like something our family will be sharing for lunch! hehehee!

Beautiful photo of moosh! :) Have a wonderful day!

Marsha_M said...

How fun! I was just thinking about a similar meal I grew up eating and I called it cornbread mush...leftover cornbread crumbled into a bowl with milk. It was so good and I haven't had it in forever. This recipe looks pretty good too.

Rhonda said...

I'll have to try this! I've been experimenting with my wheat grinder and I grind my own cornmeal but never made this particular menu item.

What I have been eating is coarsely ground wheat added to boiling water to make my own REALLLL cream of wheat. Only hubby, myself, and Ash like it though.

Hey, I think our kiddos met at EFY!

Cheryl B. said...

I chuckled when I read the title of this post, not four days ago my husband and I were discussing mush ;-}Growing up, we bought ours at the grocery store. Mine came in a large square box - like a Velveeta box, except large like the bulk/industrial size of Philadelphia cream cheese. He said they bought theirs in a round tube. Both were a solid product that our mom's sliced and then fried. Bein a good 'country girl', my mom fried ours in bacon grease. I know that doesn't go with your "vegan kick", but man did it add flavor to that mush!! Both of our mom's served it up with butter and syrup.
Between our conversation and reading this, I think I'm going to have to dig me up an old style recipe and get frying :-D