Sounds simple, right? On a Sunday afternoon you have a taste for Mayi Moulen topped with Sòs Pwa Nwa drizzled with Sòs Pwason Gwo Sèl.. or perhaps it's a cold night and you'd prefer a bowl of warm, creamy labouyl/labouyi
or maybe a nice batch of thick and savory Chaka/Tchaka, mmmmmm. The recipe calls for cornmeal. So you run to you local caribbean market and head down the aisle that contains the grains & cornmeal to pick up you're bag of cornmeal... but to your surprise instead of just one type of cornmeal, you have four or five choices, all completely different from one another. Some bags are marked "stone-ground" on the label; others specify "coarse grind", some marked "Corn Flour" ...huhhhh! Corn Flour?! Some are called grits. Who knew it would be so hard and so many choices?
The good news is I've explained below the different types of cornmeal and what dish to use them in.... Not every dish requires the same cut of cornmeal. The cut of cornmeal that you use to make Labouyi and AK100 are also completely different from one another, one is powdery like flour and the other is a slightly coarser cut. The cut used for Mayi Moulen differ depending on the texture you'd like... Are you looking for a more rustic texture or a smoother texture. So many decisions.
Please refer to numbered picture for reference to cut
#1. This cut is used for making Tchaka/Chaka
#2. This cut is used for a rustic Mayi Moulen
#3. This cut is used for a smooth Mayi Moulen
#4. This cut is used for Labouyi/Porridge
#5. This cut is used for AK100
Stone-ground: When you see this, you know the corn has been ground with the germ intact, which makes it a whole grain. It has more vitamins, minerals and fiber. The germ also has some fat, which means stone-ground cornmeal can go rancid, so store it in the freezer if you're not going to use it up fast.
Fine-ground cornmeal: This is more flourlike and less toothsome than coarse-ground cornmeal. If you're making something that needs a softer texture but still has that body you use this cut.
( USE FOR AK100)
Medium-ground cornmeal: This is a good choice when you want more texture in the finished product. This cut is used in a dish that you'd like to give that rustic feel, this is the perfect ground for
(Used for Mayi Moulen.)
Super Coarse Cornmeal: This cut is much more Chunkier than medium-grind, similar to the size of small gravel or small pebbles... because the grains are larger, they take much longer to soften. Used for Chaka/Tchaka
Now that you know try making some smooth Mayi Moulen today...