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The Kid Should See This

The science of Blue Corn Mush, a classic indigenous recipe

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What makes some corn blue? What is blue corn mush? And why might you add juniper ash to it?

Learn how blue corn flour and juniper ash worked together to provide a nutritious traditional staple food called blue corn mush. Educator, “indigenerd,” and series host Dr. Lee Francis of Laguna Pueblo explains the science within this classic indigenous breakfast and meal in this Indigi-Genius video from New Mexico PBS.

juniper ash calcium

Like porridge, oatmeal, and grits, blue corn mush provides nutrients and calories for a long day thanks to the calcium-rich juniper ash, which initiates nyxtamalization.

“This process breaks down the outer shell of the corn, enhancing flavor and increasing the amount of absorbable calcium niacin and vitamin B3.”

vitamins and nutrients
Atlas Obscura has a Navajo Blue Corn Mush recipe. Plus, see how traditional Blue Corn Mush is made in this short nutrition video from the Fort Defiance Indian Hospital’s YouTube channel:


Watch more Indigi-Genius videos on New Mexico PBS.

Then watch these handpicked videos on TKSST:
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• Gathering maple sugar the traditional Anishinaabe way
The Journey of Vanilla – From Plant to Extract
• Abigail Mendoza, world-renowned Zapotec chef
• How to extract iron from your breakfast cereal
• The science of milk
• Popcorn Under A Microscope, a science and history short by NPR’s Skunk Bear

Bonus: The word Indigenous, a CBC Kids News explainer.

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