Picture of a butterfly and mushroom Kernels. 400x300 002

Mushroom vs. Butterfly Popcorn .

We’ve been seeing a lot of questions lately about the different types of popcorn. So we thought we’d elaborate on the subject, but before digging into the details of popcorn itself, here’s a broad overview of the grain we know collectively as “CORN”.

 

Dent Popcorn .

Dent corn gets its name from the dimple (or dent) that forms on the top of each kernel as it dries. High in starch, dent corn is used for animal feed, and is also used for making corn syrups, bio-fuels and bio-plastics. Although not particularly good for eating, dent corn is an incredibly versatile crop.

Sweet Corn .

Higher in sugar than dent corn, sweet corn is the “corn on the cob” variety that Americans know and love. It is harvested in its immature stage, and enjoyed as a fresh food, rather than being left to dry.

Hominy .

Here’s a little known fact: Hominy is really just sweet corn that has been alkalized in a mineral lime bath. The soaking process softens the kernels, loosens the hulls, and also causes the kernels to double in size. Hominy has many uses. It can be coarsely ground to create grits, or mashed to make the masa which is a Mexican staple used to make tortillas, tamales, and even the beverage known as atole. (3) Imagine that without hominy, there’d be no tacos.

Popcorn .

Popcorn is a special type of corn possessing a very dense, moisture-resistant shell or hull. The strong hull allows pressure to build up inside the kernel when heated, until the whole kernel literally explodes! Although there are other whole grains including amaranth and sorghum which can also pop, popcorn is the most impressive!

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