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Discussion Starter #1
OK, so my kids favorite breakfast is grits. (For those who are unfamilier, it's a cooked corn-meal type cereal most common in the Southern US). <a href="http://www.sturmfoods.com/products/grits.html" target="_blank">http://www.sturmfoods.com/products/grits.html</a><br><br><br><br>
Is there such a thing as 'Whole grain grits'? Where would one find such a thing? I 'Googled' and found lots of links for Polenta, but that's just different, somehow, than good ol' Southern grits...<br><br>
I'm thinking that there probably AREN'T any actual whole grain "grits" - due to the process in which they're made, (simple explanation: made from hominy which is corn that has the outer layer removed).<br><br><br><br>
Any ideas?<br><br><br><br>
The ones I use (simply because I've never seen anything else around here) are the basic, white, degermed corn grits. I guess they're a good source of soluble-fiber and protein, plenty of carbs - ha - and they're 'enriched' of course, with whatever vitimins - but I'm just not totally crazy about them because they're probably not the most nutritional thing.<br><br><br><br>
I usually mix in sauteed peppers, onions, mushrooms and for my kids, sometimes a little cheese.<br><br><br><br>
I rationalize that it's a better breakfast than Pop-Tarts or Fruit Loops or nothing at all - just wondering if there is any such thing as 'Whole Grain Grits'.
 

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Baby Love
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I think the nature of corn grits involves processing out the 'whole' portion. If you are open to trying other types of grits, you may want to look in to barley grits <a href="https://www.bobsredmill.com/catalog/index.php?action=showdetails&product_ID=59" target="_blank">https://www.bobsredmill.com/catalog/...&product_ID=59</a> .
 

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I'm guessing that all grits that aren't the instant ones are whole grain.<br><br><br><br>
Also polenta and grits are the same thing.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
No, not by all definitions.<br><br><br><br>
Polenta (also known as corn grits) is coarse ground cornmeal which includes the hull and germ of the grain;<br><br><br><br>
Traditional 'southern' style grits (also known as "true" hominy grits) are different, they're made with hominy, which is corn, but processed differently -<br><br><br><br>
To make hominy, you start with field corn. Grits are produced by soaking dried corn kernels in a solution of baking soda, lime, or wood ash ("lye water") for a day or two. The kernel's shell pops off, and the kernel swells to twice its size. Kernels are rinsed more than once, then dried, and finally ground into grits. The grind can be coarse, medium, or fine.<br><br><br><br>
This same process is used to make masa harina, for corn tortillas.<br><br><br><br>
The alkaline soaking treatment of corn also enhances its nutritional value supposedly (?), and it's an important staple in the diets of many cultures.<br><br><br><br>
It must be the alkaline treatment that makes grits different from polenta.<br><br><br><br>
The grits I use are the 'traditional hominy grits' and definitely not 'instant' by any means.
 

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Dang, sorry. That's what I get for getting my food information from alton brown. Not being a southerner, I always thought grits and hominy were two different things.<br><br><br><br>
Corn grits are the only kind I've had and they totally rock (that's what they served me in restaurants when I was on vacation in South Carolina.)
 

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I buy <a href="http://www.arrowheadmills.com/products/hot-cereals.php" target="_blank">Arrowhead Mills brand</a>. I don't know if that helps or is what you're looking for; they have two hot corn "cereals" listed on that page.
 

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Tofu, based on the explanation of grits and polenta you posted above, it sounds like you answered your own question! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/grin.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":D"> If that's all correct, then it seems polenta would be the whole-grain version of grits-- "ground cornmeal which includes the hull and germ of the grain."<br><br><div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">Originally Posted by <strong>Tofu-N-Sprouts</strong> <a href="/forum/post/0"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style=""></a><br><br>
The alkaline soaking treatment of corn also enhances its nutritional value supposedly (?), and it's an important staple in the diets of many cultures.</div>
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I've also seen this from several sources, and it appears to be true, although there's different information on exactly what it does. I ran a quick search, and I saw one source that said it makes the protein in corn more bio-available, and another source says it makes the niacin in corn bio-available. I think the second is the correct explanation. But it leads to a nutritional dilemma, because the process of making the food less whole enhances its nutritional value. So do you choose the whole food, or the more processed food with useful niacin?<br><br><br><br><a href="http://waltonfeed.com/self/corn.html" target="_blank">http://waltonfeed.com/self/corn.html</a>
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Yeah, I realized I did sorta answer my own question - I was just wondering if there was a component I was missing? Was there another form of good ol' southern style hominy grits that was whole grain - but I realize there's not.<br><br><br><br>
Since my kids like (and will eat) the "white" but more processed grits WITH the additional sauteed veggies and stuff that I put in, and since they won't touch the whole-grain polenta-style grits... well, I'm sticking with these for now. Breakfast is dramatic enough around here as it is!
 

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<div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">Originally Posted by <strong>Tesseract</strong> <a href="/forum/post/0"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style=""></a><br><br>
Tofu, based on the explanation of grits and polenta you posted above, it sounds like you answered your own question! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/grin.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":D"> If that's all correct, then it seems polenta would be the whole-grain version of grits-- "ground cornmeal which includes the hull and germ of the grain."<br><br><br><br>
I've also seen this from several sources, and it appears to be true, although there's different information on exactly what it does. I ran a quick search, and I saw one source that said it makes the protein in corn more bio-available, and another source says it makes the niacin in corn bio-available. I think the second is the correct explanation. But it leads to a nutritional dilemma, because the process of making the food less whole enhances its nutritional value. So do you choose the whole food, or the more processed food with useful niacin?<br><br><br><br><a href="http://waltonfeed.com/self/corn.html" target="_blank">http://waltonfeed.com/self/corn.html</a></div>
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If I'm understanding correctly, it's only certain types of corn that need to be nixtamal'd so that the starchy exteriour can be removed and nutrients like niacin can become bio-available. Otherwise, if you miss the step, diseases like pallegara (sp) can occur.<br><br><br><br>
IMO, nixtamaling those varieties of corn is no different than soaking olives in lye/salt to make them palatable - they're both processes the food has to go through before becoming edible.
 

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nixtamal: I've seen this term on packages of masa, but I always figured it was some kind of Native American term that the word "tamale" was derived from.<br><br><br><br>
By the way: TNS knows this, but I think hominy, used for grits, and posole are processed with two different agents; Posole is processed with lime.
 

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That's what I thought too, froggy, until I read it was actually in reference to the process, not the product.<br><br><br><br><a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nixtamal" target="_blank"><b>Cool wikipedia article about the nixtamalization process</b></a>. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/smiley.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":)">
 
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