Cornmeal Mush aka “Little Girls’ Supper”

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When my mother and her sister were small girls and their father had an evening meeting, they would beg my grandmother for “little girls’ supper”. The dish they clamored for was actually fried cornmeal mush, and their mother served it to them in bowls with butter and maple syrup.

When I was growing up, my mother served this as a side dish with  ham, pork  or other meat entrées. I enjoy this nowadays for company brunch with apple wood-smoked bacon and sliced melon. My favorite maple syrup is Grade A Dark Amber.

p.s. My Mom is on the left in this treasured family photo.

Serves 4-6

  • one cup yellow cornmeal
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 quart water, divided use
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided use
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil, divided use

1. Mix the cornmeal with one cup of cold water and set aside.

2. In a medium-sized saucepan, heat three cups of water; add the salt once it is boiling. Add the cornmeal mixture to the boiling water and cook over medium heat until thickened. This will take about ten minutes and requires constant stirring with a whisk.

3. Line a loaf pan bottom with buttered parchment paper. Pour mush into pan and refrigerate until chilled.

4. Cut the mush into half inch slices. Cook in skillet in two batches. Heat two tablespoons of butter and one tablespoon of oil; fry until golden brown on both sides; repeat.

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5 Responses to Cornmeal Mush aka “Little Girls’ Supper”

  1. Elizabeth February 10, 2011 at 4:17 pm #

    This would be polenta in Italy. Sounds great. Love the picture of the sisters. Thanks for sharing. I love remembering affordable options in comfort food these cold winter months.

    • lizthechef February 10, 2011 at 10:49 pm #

      Of course, I call it polenta too – but “little girls supper” makes me smile…

  2. Mare February 11, 2011 at 6:13 pm #

    I love the title of the recipe…it makes me smile too!

    • lizthechef February 11, 2011 at 6:43 pm #

      Thanks – good to be back in touch!

  3. Nutmeg Nanny February 13, 2011 at 5:41 am #

    I love mush! We liked to fry it up and then drizzle it with maple syrup 🙂

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