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Right corn meal for corn dogs?  RSS feed

 
Gwen Lynn
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Dh experimented with making his own corn dogs today. (Ok, all ickiness aside here, I know all about the badness of hot dogs!) I must commend him for being motivated to attempt any cooking that requires preparation. Usually, cooking for him is opening a can & microwaving the contents! 

Anyways, we are both questioning the gritty texture of the corn batter. Has anyone experienced this & found a solution? Does anyone have a tried and true recipe for corn batter?

Thanks!

(PS: I have already googled and found recipes on the internet. If you have a recipe that you've tried & like, that's really what I'm after.)
 
                    
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It might have more to do with the grind of your flour?  If you use the stuff for polenta, it'll make a gritty batter no matter what you do.  If you use really really finely ground corn flour, it'll be smoother.  I've found lots of variation in store bought corn flours, just an idea.

Uhm....and just off the top of my head, cause this is a common practice in my kitchen:  Soaking any kind of flour overnight with whatever moistener your recipe calls for generally helps soften up the individual flour particles because the flour has had time to absorb the water more fully.  It'll usually hold together much better after a soak. 

I highly doubt that the batter in commercial corn dogs is made completely of corn.  Did you use any wheat flour in the batter?  Or just corn? 

This might be one of those things that's just not replicable at home.....is that a bad thing, really? 
 
Gwen Lynn
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Thanks, Marina! 

Yes, all the recipes I googled called for wheat flour in addition to the corn meal. Dh just bought ordinary corn meal, and only after his experiment did I even realize that there were different grades (grinds?) of corn meal. Soaking it overnight is an excellent suggestion & makes a lot of sense. 
 
Joel Hollingsworth
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Along the lines of soaking, you might try fermenting the batter with sourdough starter. Replacing the baking powder with half that much baking soda will cut the sour taste; hold back a portion of the wheat flour to mix with it, so it leavens more easily.
 
                    
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Yup, corn sourdough batter is reaaaallllly good.  It'll add a new dimension to the 'dogs. 
 
Leah Sattler
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I've never tried yo make my own corn dogs! if you do any further experimentation with good results make sure and post it!
 
charles c. johnson
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i can never get my batter thick enough to look right or stick to my dog . do you roll or dip corn dogs
 
Gwen Lynn
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The corn dogs he made were actually pretty good, except for that gritty factor. I don't know if he'll try it again. We have quite a lot of corn meal left though & it was nothing special. Just generic store brand cornmeal. I'm not sure if he used baking soda or not. There was a recipe that called for it.

He used those little cocktail wienies & dipped them. I think he used paper towels (I know. A permie sin!) to blot excess moisture from the wienies before he dipped them. That helped the batter stay on.

Regarding the sourdough starter, that sounds like a great idea. I think letting the batter sit overnight before using would have helped A LOT!
 
Joel Hollingsworth
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charles johnson "carbonout" wrote:i can never get my batter thick enough to look right or stick to my dog .


One option that would give a very strong flavor, but would help keep the batter in place, would be to use a batter that's based less on American cornbread, and more on Egyptian cornbread: add 2 or 3 teaspoons of ground fenugreek for every cup of cornmeal.

Gwen Lynn wrote:I think he used paper towels (I know. A permie sin!)


I use them all the time.

The water, laundry & sewage systems available to launder my towels & napkins are IMHO worse than the forestry, manufacturing & transporation systems that I use to get paper towels, and I compost them unless they become too contaminated with salt, lead, etc.

They're also the only option in many public restrooms. I put them in my pocket to compost when I get home, but often they dry out, and can be used again for some job where it isn't so important to be sanitary.
 
Jocelyn Campbell
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I have a problem with regular grocery store corn meal: it's usually rancid!  And yes, it's icky and gritty and yucky.

You know, those Jiffy cornbread boxes or the corn meal that comes in cardboard boxes in the regular baking goods aisles? It sits on the shelf too long or something and the corn germ in it goes rancid.

In the natural food sections of even large chain stores I can find plastic, sealed packages of Bob's Red Mill corn meal that has always been perfectly wonderful. Even bulk bin corn meal is fresher and less gritty than the boxed stuff.

Just my humble experience, but rancid grain is plain nasty!

A milder alternative to Joel's fenugreek seed is flax seed meal. It's quite a decent binding agent, (some use it as an egg replacer) adds fiber and omega fatty acids and I like the flavor!

Sorry, my corn bread recipes are GF, so they're a bit convoluted to those who can use wheat flour. Oh! That reminds me--I use guar gum or xanthan gum in my GF baked goods to help hold things together. They're expensive additives--probably not worth it for this project--though you only need about a teaspoon per 1-3 cups flour. Plus, either can make an excellent salad dressing emulsifier, too.

I'd love to hear how it goes next time, Gwen Lynn! Keep us posted!
 
Joel Hollingsworth
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Jocelyn Campbell wrote:I use guar gum or xanthan gum in my GF baked goods to help hold things together.


Interesting. There are a wide variety of gums out there...have you tried chia flour or psillium husk? I understand most legumes contain gums, as well, with fenugreek and carob being some of the strongest. Some of these might be cheaper than the fermented ones you mention.
 
                    
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Amaranth gets very sticky when cooked...maybe some of that ground into flour? 

Psyllium husk in enough quantity to thicken the mix, I feel, would add a weird texture and flavor.  I used to drink it as a fiber supplement.  If you let it sit in the cup for a few minutes it turns into a gag-worthy thick slop.  Then I tried to hide it in oatmeal but it added a weird texture and flavor that I couldn't get past. 

Thanks for the info on fenugreek, joel.  Going to put that to some kind of binding use in the future.  Though probably not for corn dogs. 
 
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