Last summer I worked for a local farmer, whose primary crop was sweet corn. Wonder of wonders, the farmer gave me and the other employees permission to bring home any unsold vegetables and as much corn as our families wanted, which, for us (dad), was a lot.
Once picked, corn's quality quickly deteriorates, so any corn we didn't eat the first night, I decided to freeze. Following Googled recommendations, I blanched the corn, removed the kernels, patted them dry and froze them in freezer bags. And so they sat, for 5 months, until dad said if the corn was in the freezer the next time he looked, it was going in the trash. I decided to make raw corn chips out of it (though I realize blanched corn is not raw). I used a recipe from Raw Food, Real World and it turned out better than I expected. These chips are by far my favourite prepared raw snack—they are exceptionally flavourful and crunchy. I have made them countless times, as they have won over both my parents.
The flax seed can be grounded or whole, with the main difference being the texture—grounded flax seed yields a smoother texture with less cracking while the chips are dehydrating, but, as I never have pre-ground flax seed, I rarely bother to grind them myself and just accept cracks as guides for breakage, as I also rarely score them. Brown or golden flax seed work in the recipe, and I have used both, but prefer golden simply for aesthetic reasons. Another ingredient that effects the colour is the pepper—red, yellow or orange will lend their individual colour, though the flavour remains consistent. Green is the only pepper I wouldn't use, as it is not nearly as sweet.
Finally, a note on the thickness—this recipe yields two full dehydrator sheets, when spread very thinly, which results in a crisp chip. Every time I make them, I think there's not going to be enough to cover the sheets, and every time there is—so, don't lose faith, keep spreading and a crisp chip will be yours.
Raw Corn Chips
(adapted from Raw Food, Real World)
- 40 grams golden flax seed (ground or not)
- 100 grams sweet bell pepper (about 1 small pepper, or 1/2 large one)
- 50 grams yellow onion
- 600 grams frozen corn, thawed (I imagine raw, fresh corn would work as well)
- 1 tsp chili powder
- 2 tsp cumin
- 1 tsp coarse sea salt
- pinch paprika
- pinch red pepper flakes
1. In a food processor, combine onion, flax, bell pepper and spices—process until thoroughly mixed.
2. Add corn and process until smooth...ish, or most of the corn has been broken down—if necessary, add a bit of water to facilitate the process (I sometimes use 1/4 cup or so).
3. Using an offset spatula, spread the mixture thinly across two dehydrator sheets. Score them (I rarely score them, but when I do, I just use the back of a paring knife. Otherwise, I just break them into irregular pieces in the next step) and dehydrate at 115F until dry—about 12 hours.
4. Peel dried mixture from dehydrator sheet and break into pieces. Continue to dehydrate at 115F until crisp—about 8 hours.
PS: My peppers have sprouted!