Moving on from cornbread

I was looking through a Yugoslavian cookery book… Yugoslavia no longer exists, and the area now consists of the states of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia and Slovenia. However, no doubt delicious food which the recipes in my cookery book offer is no doubt cooked across the region.

Having had success with cornbread I was interested to see recipes using cornmeal in this book. One of them sounds intriguing as it uses 300g of  smoked sausage which is boiled and 1.5 litres of liquor is kept to make a kind of soup. The sausage is cut into pieces, and put back in the liquor and then 1 kg of cornmeal (sounds rather a lot!) is poured in. The instructions then say: ‘as it cooks it should form a slightly raised mound which is dry on top. make a hole in the centre of the mound so that the boiling steam from below can escape. Cook it for about an hour. Some then leave it as it is, others mix it up. it should be crumbly not mushy.’ It is then served with 100g of melted butter poured over it and butter and 400ml of sour milk or cream. To us this may sound unusual, no vegetables in the soup and a very small amount of meat to the amount of cornmeal… maybe I will try a small version of it… maybe…

There is another dish which is served with goulash, which also sounds interesting; it can be made from cornmeal, semolina or buckwheat (which isn’t actually wheat) The first thing you need to do is bring about 1.5 litres of salted water to the boil and then pour in about 500g of coarse buckwheat flour (or I guess the same quantity of semolina or cornmeal… I only have cornmeal) Poor the meal in without stirring at all so that it is a big lump just floating on the surface of the water. Cook it like this for ten minutes, then turn it over and cook it on the other side for another ten minutes. Strain the water away then break it up and mash it with a fork. add 150g of melted butter, bacon fat, dripping or oil and stir it all in. Then it can be served with milk, I guess like a sort of soup, or milk and sugar which according to the recipe is like porridge, or with more melted butter poured over it, or – and this is what i think I would prefer with chopped bacon or ham or sausage and saurkraut. it can be eaten at any time of the day, breakfast with a cup of coffee, or with a meat dish as a side… or just as a snack with sour cream.

I think I might just stick with cornbread…

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