Nicuatole

Toasted Corn Pudding

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Preparation info

  • Serves

    8

    • Difficulty

      Easy

Appears in

Oaxaca: Home Cooking from the Heart of Mexico

Oaxaca

By Bricia Lopez and Javier Cabral

Published 2019

  • About

It’s hard to explain nicuatole without comparing it to a type of gelatin dessert, because of its bouncy texture, but it has zero gelatin in it. The way it gets that gelatin-like consistency is through all the starches naturally occurring in corn. When you’re cooking and reducing the corn, it thickens the milk, giving it a tender, slightly chewy texture. I sometimes wonder if someone just left their atole in the pot for too long, turning it into nicuatole, and that’s how this dessert was created. However it came to be, I’m glad it did. Think of it as a lightly sweet Oaxacan panna cotta with toasty undertones. It’s become iconic in Oaxaca because of its two-tone pink and white signature look. The majority of cooks use naturally derived carmine powder from nopales to achieve the striking color.