Italy HIll is one of many producers that appear at the Canandaigua Farmer's Market on Beeman street, across from what used tobe a truly wonderful mexican restaurant called Rio Tomatlan. (It appears to have had a fire and the sign says a place called Nick's Chophouse is opening there. I loved Rio Tomatlan. See my 2009 review here. Let us know in the comments if you know anything?)
In any case, my point is more about Italy HIll produce, which is a terrific provider of local provisions from popcorn to new potatoes and more. Recently, on a too-early-for-me Saturday morning, I purchased a bag of posole (which came with the tablespoons of lime to follow the directions carefully provided by the Italy Hill folks).It looked like a bag filled with what I used to call "indian corn" -- a multicolored set of corn kernels. They were beautiful, red, black, yellow kernels. I bought it in part because of my yearning for food adventures, and in part because my partner used to love the posole at, you guessed it, Rio Tomatlan.
Eventually, I decided to go for broke. I searched the internet and discovered a variety of ways to cook posole. I looked at red, green and clear polsoles. I decided on a green one involving tomatillos and . . . pork. (The latter should surprise no one. I bought ingredients. And, then I turned to converting the corn kernels I had into hominy which is the ingredient that is the corn of posole.
This took me longer than it ought to because I was hesitant. The first step is to bring the kernels to a simmer for 40 minutes to an hour, with the lime powder in with them. I think I did not get the simmer going hard enough. I was afraid of boiling the things. The next step was to let it sit and steep over night. I did that. Then one washes vigorously to take part of the kernel off. This so did not work. So, I have to admit it, I ended up cooking the kernels again and again, washing between times. This seems to have worked. I let them steep again over night.
And then I did the next step of cooking til the kernels "blossomed" like flowers - which is what the directions said to do. I THINK I am there. (Well, I mean I think the corn is there.)I am not sure. Here's why: They still do not look like the mushy white kernels I have seen in canned hominy, but. . . . often fresher versions do not look like canned versions of things to me so. . . ) I have eaten a few "raw" and they have the toothy-ness I think hominy in posole is supposed to have.
Next: I am going to make the stew. Whether it will be Rick Bayless quality or not, it has certainly been an adventure so far. You never know what you will learn when you take your next food adventure, and who knows what I will learn from the next steps. All because Italy Hill plus Rio Tomatlan inspired me to try.