Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Home Cooking >
Dec 9, 2008 05:38 PM

What is Maiz Morado (not the peruvian kind?)

Today in my local mexican grocery I picked up a bag of loose dried corn kernels called maiz morado, but it came in an unmarked bag with no info on it. It is not the very deep purple peruvian kind used for chicha morada. have a suspicion that it is blue corn, because it is reddish blue. ,Could any mexican food experts enlighten me onto its traditional uses.

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Maiz = corn Morado = purple

    1 Reply
    1. re: todao

      Yeah..I know how to speak spanish. Its just that I don't know if it is mislabled maiz azul.

    2. No expert here, but you occasionally see purple corn in New Mexico. If I remember correctly, the Hopi associated the four colors of corn (white, yellow, blue, and purple) with the four cardinal directions. It's a fair bet that the color occurs in other regions, too.

      NM purple corn definitely has a strong blue cast. It's a flint corn (round kernels, no dent). Does that sound like what you have?

      9 Replies
      1. re: alanbarnes

        The kernels are rounder smaller than the more common dried white corn, but most of them have a definite dent...Its pretty intriguing. It looks like a blue-purple version of the red corn sold in most mexican stores.

        1. re: kirinraj

          With a dent, it's probably not a NM variety. Gotta figure there are hundreds (thousands?) of heirloom cultivars out there, though. If one purple corn grows in the US and another in Peru, it's a fair bet there are others in between.

          1. re: alanbarnes

            True about the many varieties of corn. I've even heard of a black corn that is grown in mexico. Now that would be cool to see. I think I'm going to try to turn it into nixtamal and grind it in my new estrella "molino para granos" into masa para tortillas. I'll report with what happens

            1. re: kirinraj

              You just bought yourself a Mexican Purple Corn.... simple as that... its not the Peruvian version, its not the New Mexican version... its a version from Mexico... used as other corn... for tortillas, tamales etc.,

              The rainbow of well established (i.e., not heirloom varieties unique to one particular valley, crag or rancho) corn varieties are:

              Dark Brown

              1. re: Eat_Nopal

                Cool! So would it be good to grind it into masa para tortillas? Also, have you seen it in tortillas, antojitos, or tamales etc. in Mexico? Thanks for all the help everyone.

                1. re: kirinraj

                  Yup... although now that I think about the dent... you probably have pozole corn... it needs to be boiled with Cal and the outer bran removed simmering with other ingredients.

                  1. re: Eat_Nopal

                    Not to hijack the thread, but all corn needs to be nixtamalized before being ground for tortilas. Sometimes you can buy dried corn that has already been nixtamalized, and sometimes it's labeled as pozole, but it's the same corn as you use for tortillas, tamales, etc. It's just that somebody has already taken care of the first step for you.

                    1. re: alanbarnes

                      Actually... the varieties used to make Pozole like the white Cacahauzintle are a bit different than those used to make masa... different texture, flavor etc.... in Mexico you can find a red purple maiz that is used for pozole (larger kernels & with the "Corn Nuts" dent) and there is a red purple maiz that is smaller & better suited for masa and doesn't have that characteristic dent.

                      1. re: Eat_Nopal

                        Can someone help out this poster on the home cooking board?

                        Any uses for purple corn after making chicha morada?

      2. I've not seen it dried, but I bought some canned a while back and wound up including it in a sort of guisado de puerco I made. It definitely had some of that hominy whang to it, suggesting some lye in the process. I'd be willing to bet that what was in that can was just one step past what you have. It was a whole bunch meatier than any canned sweet corn, and more interesting than most canned hominy.