Cornstarch is also known as Corn flour or Maize starch; it is a very common ingredient in our kitchen with many uses. Cornstarch is used in baking, breading to thickening of soups, and sauces. Based on the type of corn processed, corn flour may come in different colors; some are yellow, while others are white.
What is Cornstarch?
Corn flour is a very versatile ingredient in many formulations as a batter for baked goods, and a binder in processed meats. In Britain, it is called Corn flour while Americans call it Cornflour. Some people spell it with the words apart “corn flour, corn starch” while others join the words “cornflour, cornstarch“. This article is about how to make yellow corn flour at home; this is based on the question: if cornstarch or cornflour can be made with the yellow corn.
Making yellow corn flour recipe at home is easy but it usually takes some time because it involves the process of soaking the corn, blending it or milling it, and then sieving the mixture to have a fine consistency before drying it.
Even if you don’t have whole corn kernels at home but want to make this thickening agent, you can simply use cornmeal or mealie meal as long as the starch is still retained. You should also know that the time it takes for the corn to be soft varies; it might take a few hours or a whole day depending on how fresh your corn is. For semi-dried corn, it can take less time while dryer corn takes more time to absorb water and become soft.
Lastly, the process of making corn flour or cornstarch is almost similar to cold-pressed coconut oil or Akamu recipe. If you are making a large amount of cornstarch you can take the corn to the commercial milling machine to do the job and not overwork your blender. The same process of making yellow corn flour applies to white corn; the only difference is the little variation in color.
Uses of Cornstarch
- Corn flour can be used to thicken sauce such as gravy sauce and beef sauce
- For baking cakes, bread, and pies
- You can use corn flour to glue paperwork or school projects
- Due to the starchy and flavorless nature of corn flour, it can be used to make homemade custard powder or pap.
- Some people eat it as a snack.
- The fine flour can be incorporated with wheat flour or all-purpose flour for recipes such as pancakes, muffins, or cakes.
- Also, it can be used to coat fried fish, chicken, and other fried foods
Items needed for making cornflour
- Dried yellow corn, white or red corn)
- Blender or food processor
How to make Cornstarch at home
Softening the Corn Kernels
- In a medium bowl, measure in dried corn and add cold or warm water to cover the corn. You can use yellow corn, white corn, or any type you have at home.
- Cover the corn with a lid and leave to rest for 12 hours or overnight on the counter to enable it to absorb water and become soft.
- Once your corn is soft, remove it from water and rinse properly until the water turns clear.
- Bring the corn into the blender and add some water to cover the corn in the blender. Blend until you notice a smooth texture.
- You can decide to blend the corn in batches if the amount of cornstarch you want to make is much. Repeat the process until you are done with all the corn in the bowl.
- When you are done blending the corn, if your paste is very thick, add more water and mix to have a runny consistency; this will hasten the sieving process.
- To strain your cornstarch, spread a cheesecloth in a strainer and place it on a medium bowl.
- Pass the blended corn through the cheesecloth, bring all the ends of the materials together, and use your hand to squeeze out all the liquid from the paste. The finer the pores of the strainer, the finer and smoother your corn starch or corn flour becomes.
- After sieving the corn flour mixture, it’s important to allow it to rest for 2 to 4 hours so that the starch separates from the water.
- Once the cornstarch sediments, you can decant (pour out) the water at the top of the bowl.
- Use a spoon to a spoon to scrape off the cornstarch from the bottom of the bowl.
- Place it in a nutmeg bag or any material that will help drain the remaining water without wasting the starch. Fold the mouth of the bag and place it on the sink. Put a little weight on it to help strain the liquid quickly.
- After an hour, you will notice a solid paste; this paste is your corn flour or cornstarch. In order to turn it into a powder, spread it on a tray or drying surface and sundry. If you have a dehydrator, you can simply dry it quickly.
- Once dried, break them apart or grind it in a dry mill to have a smooth and fine powder.
- Your corn flour is ready for use, store in an airtight container. It can last for up to 6 months when properly dried.