First batch of chicos


This morning we gathered around the horno in anticipation of how our first batch of chicos might come out.  Will they be cooked just right?  Or will too many of them be burnt?  These questions will be answered shortly…


We opened up the horno and met the familiar smell of steam from cooked chicos escaping the opening door.  The door was basically covered with a big piece of flagstone and mud.  On the inside of the horno is the big pile of cooked corn, still inside the leaves, or ojas.  The chicos aren’t too hot to handle so we were able to pull them out and put them in a wheelbarrow.  The wheelbarrow then goes next to a table where we string up the individual ears of corn after taking off the leaves but being careful not to take off the stem of the ear of corn.  We string up the chicos with a big needles that was made from a cut clothes hangar.  We string about 5 to 10 ears of corn, make a loop with the string by tying the ends together, and then hang is from a nail in the ceiling of the porch to dry.  It will take at least two or three weeks for the chicos to completely dehydrate and then we can desgranarlo or take the dried kernels off the cob.

But before we really get busy on the stringing up process, it is more important to eat breakfast!  So we have plenty of butter, chile, and salt to go with our fresh chicos as we eat one of the best breakfasts northern New Mexico has to offer!


About Miguel

Miguel Santistevan is a researcher, educator, and advocate for traditional agriculture crops and systems.
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