I am looking for corn meal in the Perth, WA area. NOT corn flour! Can anyone help?!?
The Wollies organic line (can't recall the name) carries Polenta in Sydney which is basically corm meal. I use it for corn bread as well as polenta and it works just fine. I'll try to check for the name next time I see it. Its in the "organic" section (pretty small) with the health grains and nuts.
I'm not sure if cornmeal (US style) and polenta are completely interchangeable. Cornmeal has a finer grind, somewhere between polenta and cornflour. The same way that grits and cornmeal are not quite the same, and include different parts of the corn kernal. Also, I think that true polenta is made from a different variety of corn than cornmeal, so the flavour could be slightly different. But I should think that combining polenta with some regular wheat flour might get similar results, if you are desperate.
Also, note that in the UK and Australia, corn flour is often used to describe what Americans call cornstarch. These are very different products.
It's probably no help to you in Perth, but I have found cornmeal in my local Coles in Sydney, in their "caribbean foods" section, part of the "international foods" aisle. I've also seen it at a couple of ethnic grocers, like the Fiji Market in Newtown.
Gemuse - I suspect you are right. The further complication is that Polenta also covers a range of styles and textures - east coast or west coast from Italy, f rom the practically white to the deep yellow. With such a basic ingredient it gives you lots of options to be creative, and Australia's Italian heritage you can get lots of choice if you look.
Have you tried Kakula's in Northbridge or Freo? They carry all kinds of flours, grains and meals by weight.