Brazilian style corn cake with Mexican nixtamalized corn flour

by Heguiberto on March 23, 2012

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The white corn cake that Fer from the Brazilian blog chucrute com salsicha made the other day caught my eye because she uses an ingredient of which I have plenty in my pantry: harina de maiz nixtamalizada, or Mexican corn flour. It’s been sitting around since Steven prepared delicious vegetarian tamales awaiting the next tamale cook-off because we didn’t know what else to make with it.

Brazilian style corn cake with Mexican nixtamalized corn flour

Brazilian style corn cake with Mexican nixtamalized corn flour

Fer is based here in Northern California. She shares the same trouble I do when it comes to buying corn flour for Brazilian dishes. In the US it is ground too coarsely. So she resorted to the Mexican corn flour which has a similar texture to the Brazilian. I think that’s wonderfully creative in-and-of-itself and has given me loads of new ideas already.

I’ve wanted to test this flour for some time but never got around to doing it. I guess was afraid that the way the corn was processed, nixtamalization, would impart a different flavor to the cake. Well, that was completely wrong. Thanks for debunking that myth, Fernanda!

I basically followed her recipe except that I used pastry flour in the combo corn-wheat flour. This made the cake extra fluffy. It came out deliciously corny, not too sweet and super moist.

Brazilian style corn cake with Mexican nixtamalized corn flour

key ingredients for Brazilian style corn cake with Mexican nixtamalized corn flour

key ingredients for Brazilian style corn cake with Mexican nixtamalized corn flour

1½ cups harina de maiz nixtamalizada (Mexican corn flour)
2½ cups whole milk
2 cups pastry flour
1 tbsp baking powder
½ tsp kosher salt
2/3 cup sugar
2 eggs
½ cup canola oil
¾ tsp fennel seeds

Pre heat oven to 400F.

Grease a large baking pan with canola oil and set aside.

Put corn flour in a large bowl, add milk and whisk together to combine. Let this mix sit for about 5-10 minutes. Add eggs and mix it again to combine. Blend in pastry flour, salt, sugar, fennel seeds and baking powder.

Transfer mixture to prepared baking pan and bake for 35-40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean.

Serve with a nice cup of black coffee.

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{ 10 comments… read them below or add one }

Kathryn March 23, 2012 at 5:47 am

You have the most interesting blog – I love to stop in and see what’s up. I really love the sound of this one; especially the fennel seeds. I think I’m going to have to make this one gluten free. =D

Krista March 23, 2012 at 12:55 pm

I have never used Mexican corn flour but it sounds perfect in this corn cake! A shop in Brisbane just started carrying some Mexican ingredients, so I will check there next time I’m in town to see if I can get some. 🙂
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Joao Silva March 23, 2012 at 3:38 pm

Looks Perfect!!! I´m really happy since I found this wonderful place!!!

sure I visit again!!1


Heguiberto March 23, 2012 at 3:53 pm

Hi Joao,
Thnaks you for stopping by! Please come back.

Heguiberto March 23, 2012 at 3:55 pm

Hi Krista,
Let us know how yours turns out! Mexican corn is ground super fine. It has a very nice texture and flavor. I am sure you will like it.

Devaki @ weavethousandflavors March 23, 2012 at 5:28 pm

Hi Hegui & Stevie – This looks wonderful! I love hat there are so many versions of corn cake/bread the world over!

This flour has me very intrigued – never heard of it before and the addition of fennel seeds is lovely.

chow! Devaki @ weavethousandflavors
Devaki @ weavethousandflavors recently posted..One Fish, Two Fish, Cold Fish ~ Sriracha Salmon Ceviche Towers with Garden Guacamole & Radish SproutsMy Profile

Nicole March 23, 2012 at 9:26 pm

Great post! I will be pinning this for sure!
Nicole recently posted..Bacon, Nectarine and Feta Salad, with a Honey and Balsamic Dressing – Bacon Connoisseur’s WeekMy Profile

OysterCulture March 31, 2012 at 6:42 pm

This corn cake sounds delightful and I am very excited about the idea of the fennel seeds.
OysterCulture recently posted..When hamming it up in Spain is serious business – My jamón ibéricoMy Profile

Magic of Spice April 3, 2012 at 3:14 pm

What a wonderful corn cake! I was a bit surprised by the addition of fennel seeds here, but it sounds completely lovely 🙂
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OysterCulture April 7, 2012 at 12:53 pm

Ok, I just ran to my neighborhood market looking for coconut. I found that and the flour listed here. I had to try this cake, and my thought is to bring it with me tomorrow for a brunch – so awesome. My hubby just came back from a long bikeride and I offered him a piece. Absolutely brilliant. Thanks for sharing.
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