Cornmeal Mush for dinner, anyone??

the basis for cornmeal....

How about a nice bowl of cornmeal mush??

I was talking to my Mom this morning, as I try to do each morning…she was having her usual bowl of grits with cheese for breakfast…and she said she had read something in the Birmingham News about Italian grits. “I don’t want anybody messing up my grits with Italian spices!”, she exclaimed. I explained to her that it was in all likelihood a recipe for

Polenta with mushrooms

Polenta with mushrooms

polenta, which is really just fancy cornmeal grits, nothing spicy, and that it can be served soft, or you can slice it cold and saute it in some olive oil and serve it as a side dish as dinner. She was slightly mollified by the answer….but it brought back a memory for her.

She said, “I remember in the depression…maybe 1933,  my Mother would often cook cornmeal mush for supper, when we didn’t have anything else to eat, and I liked it.” I asked how they ate it and she told me  it was served it in a bowl with a little milk and a tad of butter.  And that her brother was quite embarrassed that cornmeal mush was all they had for dinner…but sometimes it really was, all they had. And if you’ve never had grits for dinner…it’s good, and it’s filling.

So perhaps in these difficult economic times, when people are cutting back, and doing more with less…it’s nice to remember a recipe for  Cornmeal mush  that has been around since the early 1800s…and has been enjoyed by many, many thrifty generations, who might not have had any meat in the cupboard, or any vegetables, but they did have cornmeal. The link above is just one of many, but the variations are all really the same…pouring cornmeal slowly into water and cooking it until it’s mush…add a little salt and pepper, some butter, and you’re there….just like grits. Or you can slice it cold and saute it…just like polenta. All variations on a theme. Or some evidently serve cornmeal mush with syrup….though that sounds like a quick way to ruin up a good bowl of mush.


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