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Smut is Good For You

Smut Really is Good for You.

Creamy, dark, earthy and delicious, spread across melted cotija cheese and sprinkled with fresh onions and cilantro. Mmmm. This smut screams “eat me!”

We’re talking a personal favorite: huitlacoche. This mushroom-like delicacy is a Mayan-influenced Mexican delicacy. The rust is an ugly, lumpy, bluish-black, disfiguring infection that attacks the corn cobs by forming galls instead of juicy corn kernels, leaving the corn and its byproducts virtually useless. To my not-so-trusty government, this means that subsidies used to promote the use of corn oil, corn syrups and other related unhealthy items are threatened by something that destroys the primary product. So in the US, corn smut, sometimes called corn rust, has been eradicated. What a sad and foolish loss.

This delicious, mouth-watering treat offers more nutrition than the original corn and fetches a much higher price, too. For now, it’s only available in cans here in the states, but with a short hop across the border or a fortuitous find, you can try it fairly easily.

Just today, M and I were walking through a very local Chicago street fair and happened upon a vendor hawking this satisfying treat. The smell, the find and the company made it a must-buy which completely ruined our planned dinner somewhere in the loop’s maze of famous restaurants. Instead, our Spanish was adequate to order the works on home made tortillas. The paper plate folded under the juicy wet of the quesadilla which was doused with fresh salsa. We left a juicy trail in the street as we nibbled our way home.

Buen provecho.

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