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Foods -- Vegetables

What is corn smut?

Rating: 35

Corn smut or Maizteca Mushroom in gourmet talk is edible at certain stages. It is also known as cuitlacoche (wheat-la-co-chay) or Mexican Truffle. It is native to America and was used by the Aztecs as a delicacy. Each kernel in an ear can have its own mushroom inside that grows and expands until the husks burst open to reveal the gray-black growth. They are harvested while they are still creamy white. They can be frozen and dried for longer storage. They are now carefully cultivated for commercial sale. They have a sweet smoky flavor.

PREPARED BY: Angela M. Fraser, Ph.D., Associate Professor/Food Safety Specialist, and Carolyn J. Lackey, Ph.D., R.D., L.D.N., Professor/Food and Nutrition Specialist, North Carolina State University (August 2004)

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