Friday, December 5, 2014

Corn Pudding from the "Guarded Secrets" cookbook

Being from the midwest, I've always had an affinity for any recipe involving corn. My hometown was flanked by cornfields on every side. It was always a staple food and one that I've always liked. My grandma makes the best cornbread casserole in the entire world, no joke. I'm hoping one day she'll let me share it with the world, but for now I'm sworn to secrecy on the recipe. When I saw the recipe for "Corn - Spoon" in the "Guarded Secrets" cookbook, I knew I had to try it. It's the first recipe I've made from the book, but it definitely won't be the last.

* I knew this cookbook was special the second I dug it out of a box at a yard sale. To find out how special, read part 1 of the story. *

Now, on to the recipe....

I've edited the recipe instructions from the book slightly, to make it a bit easier to understand, but I did not change the actual recipe. Actually, I did change one small thing. I used less salt than was called for. 

This recipe is a corn pudding or a corn souffle. It turns out silky soft and melts in your mouth.


by Estelle Pond Rowen

1 1/4 cups scalded milk
3/4 cup cornmeal
1/4 tsp salt
3 eggs, separated
2 tbsp butter
1 can cream style corn
3/4 tsp baking powder

Heat milk over medium high heat stirring frequently. When it starts to look slightly frothy, remove from heat. Stir in cornmeal and salt until the consistency of thick mush. Over low heat, blend in butter, corn and baking powder. Remove from heat.

Beat egg whites (at room temperature) until stiff but not dry. Beat yolks until thick and lemon color. Fold egg whites and yolks into corn mixture. 

Pour batter into a greased 2 qt. baking dish. Bake in 375 degree oven for about 35 minutes. Should be golden brown and puffy.

Serves 6

I tested this recipe out on family and a few friends. The votes were split directly in half. Everyone liked the flavor, but some didn't like the texture. It comes out light and silky and soft. Those of us who did like it, loved it's creamy consistency. We ate half the pan before I could even get a picture. 

If you like souffles or savory puddings you should definitely give this recipe a try. 

*The only addition I would recommend for this recipe would be a little bit of cheddar cheese. I'm going to try it next time and I think it will take this recipe to new heights. I would not recommend adding green chiles or jalepenos, which are usually great accompaniments to corn casseroles. I don't think the texture of the peppers would work well with the overall texture of the dish. However, if you try it with peppers, I would love to hear how it turns out! 

The original page from the cookbook.
If you are or know the creator of this recipe, Estelle Pond Rowen, please send me an email at thethriftmonster@gmail

Stay tuned for more recipes from the "Guarded Secrets" cookbook. 

Guarded Secrets - The Story - Chapter 1

It had been a rather unfruitful yard sale excursion that day and I was riding home. The sun was high in the sky now and even though it was the middle of October, it was a hot day.  I was tired and had been at it now for hours the whole time riding my bike from sale to sale. Nearly my entire neighborhood was participating in the community sale and I had been excited to be able to ride my bike to them, but the heat quickly vanquished my enthusiasm. Just as soon as I had decided to call it quits, a bright green sign caught my eye. I was close to home, so I figured one more sale wouldn't hurt.

Hot and crouched over a box full of dusty books in someones drive way, I was ready to give up. The old woman running the sale looked as though she was ready to pack it all up as well. The smell of cooking food was wafting out of her screen door and I knew that as soon as I left, she would go inside to finally eat her late lunch. I felt guilty from keeping her from eating. I started to stand up to leave and was suddenly pushed back down.

Startled, I whipped around to see who had pushed me. I expected to see an inconsiderate shopper not paying attention to where they were going. Instead, I saw that I was the only one there aside from the lady who was running the sale and she was sitting behind a table in the garage. I thought that maybe I was just overheated and my body was trying to tell me so. Or perhaps, my legs had fallen asleep from crouching down so long. As I started to stand up again, I heard whispering in my ear. Startled again, I turned around and noticed the lady staring at me curiously.

"What was that you said?" I asked her.

"Nothing dear." she said with a confused look on her face.

"Oh. I thought you said something. This heat must be getting to me." Embarrassed, I turned away from her so she couldn't see the redness in my cheeks.

That's the moment I saw the book. It was tucked in tight with some other books, but the bit of bright yellow cover that was sticking out caught my eye. I was seeing it like it was in an old movie where they fade out with a big circle that slowly gets smaller around the object they are focusing on. It sounded like a dozen people were standing behind me whispering to each other, but I couldn't understand their words. A cloud moved in front of the sun casting a blue shadow over the driveway and time seemed to stand still for a moment. I reached for the book and as I picked it up, the cloud moved away and the sun shone brightly on it's yellow cover making it gleam as if it were encrusted with a thousand diamonds. The cover simply read, "Guarded Secrets."