Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Peace and Hominy

I'm behind on linking to articles, so here's one from the March/April Style.

I'm always looking for subjects for my Food for Thought column, and my folks suggested talking to an acquaintance, Chris Manning, whose grandmother began selling what's now known as Mrs. Manning's Hominy from her East Baltimore rowhouse. Food for Thought often focuses on ties between historic Baltimore foods and their modern counterparts (there's also a fair bit of my own personal experience sprinkled in the columns too), so hominy seemed right up my alley. Except I knew little about it, and even less about how it might be used today. A chance Sunday visit to Tortilleria Sinaloa (1716 Eastern Ave., Baltimore,[410] 276-3741) in Fells Point for tortilla chips reminded me about posole, the Mexican soup that features hominy as one of its main ingredients. The folks at Sinaloa graciously allowed me to observe the posole being made one very cold morning, and the results are in the column.

Although I don't have a written version for posole, an experienced cook can probably follow the description in the column and make her own (though I haven't yet). What I did try, however, was the Winter Vegetable Chili from Food and Wine magazine, which pleased even the non-vegetarians at my dinner party. The parsnips, carrots, and red pepper combo make it a little sweet, and I even added butternut squash to the pot, which probably didn't help. But the canned chipotle in adobo tempered the sweetness with a little fire.

If you have any ideas for future Food for Thought columns (or any food/features), please let me know. The Baltimore food frontier is still ripe for exploration. Thanks.

P.S. Thanks also to Style Senior Editor Laura Wexler for the terrific header.

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